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t^ lUfC J-^ 



HARVARD COLLEGE 
LIBRARY 




FROM THE FUND OF 

FREDERICK ATHEARN LANE 

OF NEW YORK 
dauof 1849 



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INISHOWEN:r ; 



ITS 



iistorj, Cr^itiims, fc l^ntiqmties ; 



CONTAININa A NUMBEB OF 



ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS, 

Hitherto Unpublished, proctiredfrom the State Paper Office, Continental 
Libraries, and Private CoUeotionB, 



WITH numeSious notes 

FBOV THB « «. 

ANNALS OF THE FOUR MASTERS, 

AND OTHEB SOURCES. 



B¥ MAGHTOCHAIB. 



**The natural wonders of the Barony of Inishowen "would 
alone supply materials for a volume/' 

HalVs Ireland, VoUm., p. 2^6. 



LONDONDERRY: 

...^. PaiMTEO AT THE JOUBNAL OfTICS, No. 2, ShIFQTJAT-StBBBT. 



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d''<^i-C<t^ 'jLcti.^J 



.ERRATA. 



JPage 15, line 16, for "this ancient remains" read "this 
ancient remain." 
,y 21 „ 15, for " then again" read " them again." 
,, 60 „ 32 for "Encyclopoedie" read "Encyclopedia." 
V, 71 „ 28 for " 1800" read " 1657." 
„ 96 „ 6 after academy insert a comma instead of 

period." 
„ 103 „ 3 from bottom, for " exhiliarating" read 
^ • " exhilirating." 

16 for "eUgibilty" read " eligibiUty." 
7 i(x " Cookinny" read " Coolkinny," 

17 for " £361 10s" read " £381." 
24 for " towns" read " Tonns." 
14. from bottom, for " and the latter" read 

" and that at Greenbank." 



\ 



» 


127 


91 


136 


>> 


137 


>» 


169 


» 


173 



■T. 



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CONTENT S; 



Chapteb 1,—Introdtiction. 
Statistics — ^Bonndaries— Specimen of Knglish Composition ii 
the 17th Century — ^Headlands and Inlets of the Sea — ^Mountains : 
Slieve Snaght — Maghtogher— Bivers and Lakes — EcjJesiastical 
Divisions, . . . . • . . • , . . . 3^ 

Chapteb II. 
First Colonists — ^Parthalon^s Expedition — ^The Colony' of Nome- 
dins—The Firbolgs— The Tnatha de Danians— Ith— Magh Ithe— * 
The Milesians— The Three Collas— Defeat of the CoOas by the 
Sons of Niall the Great — ^Ennis-Owen, ... . . - . . 7 

Chapter HI. — Antiquities. 
Beligion of the Ancient Irish — Cromleachs — Cromleach of 
Magheramore — Cromleachs of Cnldaff— Cromleach of Dmng — Of • 
the *' Scalp" — ^Dmidical Temples and Circles — ^Temple of Lara- 
hirl — Of Carrowmore — Of Greinan — Why Greinan coald not be 
Aileach as supposed — Cyclopean Architecture in Ireland ns)i ex% 
cnted by the (le Danians — Caves — Pillar Stones — Mechanical Arts 
of the Ancient Irish — Cairns — Lisses, . . •. . . . 13 

Chapter IV. — From St, Patrick to Turgesius. 
Conversion of Frince Owen — St. Patrick Founds two Churches 
in his Territory — ^Death of Eoghan — Cinel-Eoghan — ^Poem of the 
Bishop of Fesola — Murtagh Mao Earcha — ^Dermod — His Cele- 
brated Decision^agaiust St. Columbldlle — ^Abbey of Fahan — ^Hugh 
lY., Monarch — HughV: Phenomena in his Beign, .. ..23 

Chapter V. — From Turgesius to De Courcy. 
Hugh VI — ^Arrival of the Danes — Nialle Caille— Danish Tyranny 
— Turgesius falls by the Strategy of Malachi I. — ^Hugh VII : Hia 
Victories over the Danes — Daniel O'NiaU, Monarch — ^Malachi II., 
or Maelseachlainn, Monarch — Brian Boiroimhe Deposes him — ' 
Restoration of Malachi — His Death — Legend of Cucullin — Aileach 
Demolished by O^Brien — ^Murtagh M'Laughlin last Monarch of 
the House of Inishowen— A Remarkable Incident— The Sleeping " 
Warriors of Aileach, . . . . « . * . 29 

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Ghapteb YI.— The Efglish Conquest. 
De Conrcy—O'Maoldmn—O'Doherty— O'Neill and O'Boxmell— - 
Defeat of O'Doherty by Galyagh O'Doxmell, who takes Elagh and 
Greenoasile (pp. 88 and 170) — Essex and Monntjoy — Sir Henry 
Dockwra — O'Neill and Hngh O'Donnell come to the BeUef of 
Inishowen — ^Defection of Arthur O'Neill and Niall Garvo O'Donnell — 
Battle of Pollin— Cahir Roe O'Doherty— M*Davet— Cahir's Defeat 
by Field-Marshal Winkel — ^His Death — ^Rev. Giesar Otway's Acconnt 
of Cahir's Death — The Established Church, and other blessings 
that have flowed from British Connexion, . . . . 37 

Chapteb VII. — Tenant Bight. 
Tenant llight, .. .. .. .. ..'45 

Chapteb VIII. — Burt, Inch, and Upper Fahan. 
Statistics — Castles of Aileach, Burt, and Inch— -Houses of Wor- 
ship—National Schools — Principal Seats — ^Memoir of Most Bev. 
Dr. M^Devitte, Bishop of Derry — Jottings of the Londonderry and 
Lough Swilly Line of BaUway, . . . . . . 53 

Chapteb IX. — Lower Fahan and Desertegney. 
Statistics — The Soil and its Productions — Houses of Worship — 
Public Institutions — ^Principal Seats — ^National Schools — Bnncrana : 
Its Markets and Institutions — Legend of Ein-y-Gow — Outline of 
the Life of Bight Bev. Dr. Maginn, Bishop — Tradition of Hegarty's 
Bock — Parish Priests for the Last Century — Little Altars of the 
Penal Times — ^Meentaghs, . . . . . . 61 

Chapteb X. — Clonmany. i 

Statistics— Soil and Surface^Vale of Tullagh—The Protestant I 

Chureh and Graveyard — Gaddydnbh : an Anecdote of the Church — 
Dresden : its Occupants, Domhnall Gorm, or the Shepherd without 
a Flock, Clarke Mor, the Grinder, Dr. Chichester, Major Met- 
calfe — Glenevin and its Waterfall — Both-Chonais — ^Natural Curi- 
(teity — ^The "Waterloo Priest" — Urris — Gap of Mamore — Croagh 
Carragh Mountain and its Lakes — Caves of Leenan — An ** Usque- 
baugha House" — ^Dunaff : the Prisoner of the Cave — '* Virtue alone 
is true Nobility" — Principal Seats — Little Altars — ^Parish Priests — 
National Schools — John Toland — Isle of Doagh — ^A TiAe of Blood — 
Lords of Carrick-a-Brahe — Legend of Strabreagy — ^How Dr. 
O'Donovan Accounts for the Fairies — Tradition of Cruckuagalcosh, 70 

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Ghapteb XI. — Donagh. 
" The Good SMnariten"— The Eectory— By the Woodland- 
Little Altarfl — ^Minerals, Soil, and Surface — Statistics — ^Mnllinar 
bantra — ^Principal Seats — ^National Schools — ^Agriculture, a Camiie 
Scot — Convent of Mount St. Mary — Camdonagh : its Trade and 
Institutions — ^Birthplace of John Colgan — His " Acta Sanctorum'* 
and other Works — ^Rev. J. M'Laughlin, Professor of the Ir&Oir '^-'-^ 
Language — ^Memoir of the Rev. P. Kearney, Principal of the Vin- *-■' 'i 
centians — ^Parish Priests for the Last Century — The Old Church : 
Its Antiquities and Surroundings — The Serpent of Glentogher — 
" Sufficient for the Irish/' .. ... .. * ..98 

Chapter jni.-^IUicit Distillation, 
Focus of the Trade — Smugglers : their Tricks and Stratagems — 
Pat the Tailor proceeding to Measure the " Man in the Moon" — 
Why Lieutenant M^Cabe went round by Meedianban, . . . . 115 

Chapter XIII. — CUmcha. 
The Boad to Malin — Malin Town — Statistics — Surface and Soil — 
Lag — The "Well" — Curious Beach — ^Views from Meedianmore — 
Edlloort — Shane Macavergy — ^How I Became a Middleman — ^Boat- 
men in Distress — ^Houses of Worship— Succession of Parish 
Priests— LitUe Altars— National Schools— Principal Seats, . . 124 

Chapter XIV.— CuZdfljf. 
Statistics — ^Physical Aspect — The Bay — Principal Seats — The 
Village — Crossroads — Houses of Worship— National Schools — The ,^ 
Cross of St. Ultan — Remarks on the LitUe Altars of the Penal 
Days — Macklin, the Comedian— A Bishop's Lonely Grave; **0h. 
My Friends !" — Taken for the Crime of Saying Mass ; Master and 
Pupil — Norton Butier — ^Abus^ of the Laws — ^A Bloody Wheel Car — 
The Murderers of Butler and their Associates — Balfour's Treachery 
and Punishment — How Major Dawson Overshot the Mark — Sars- 
field's Secretary — A Patriot of '48 — ^A Good Rector— Treasure 
Trove — Ogham Monument — ^Parish Priests, . . . . 135 

Chapter XV. — Lower MovilU. 
A «• Model Landlord"— Statistics— Course of the Tides— 
O'Doherty's Wooing — A Legend of Grreencastie — ^Danes of Lough 
Foyle — ^Town of Moville : it Trade and Institutions — Convent of 
Mercy — Ravenscliff — Principal Seats — Houses of Worship — 
National Schools — ♦• The Lovers of Moville"-*Greencastle, . . 1.5<5 



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Chapteb XVI. — Upper MoviUe. 
Statistics— Surface and Soil — The Gross of Cooley — The Bnild- 
ing of Drang Chapel — ^Who shall have the Cows? — ^Houses of 
Worship— Principal Seats — Qoigley's Point — Cortaintail going to 
the Fair — He Charms a Lion in his Den — Little Altars of the 
Penal Days — Succession of Parish Priests, . . . . 170 

Chapteb XVII. — Iskaheen. 
Statistics — ^Memorial of Father McLaughlin — ^Muff— *' 0, dear 
no ; its an Irish Superstition," . . . . . . 176 

Chapter XVIII.— J5w^jp» of Berry — Concltisionr 195 
Appendix, . . . . . . . . . . 201 



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PREFACE. 



The following chapters are chiefly the reprint of a series 
of papers which appeared in the Londoriderri/ Journal, on 
the history, traditions, and antiquities of the district of 
Inishowen. Those papers, which were merely written for the 
amusement of the readers of the Journal, met with a favourable 
reception, and, towards their conclusion, a desire prevailed to 
have them in a separate and more enduring form ; so, in com- 
pliance therewith, I have revised and arranged them as they 
are now offered to the public. On revision it was deemed ad- 
visable to omit some portions of the original series, but addi- 
tions have been made of matter hitherto unpublished, which, it 
is hoped, may prove not only interesting but useful. No pains 
have been spared to obtain the most reliable information, from 
both public and private sources, regarding the old peninsula. 
That invaluable repertory of Irish history. Dr. CDonovan's 
edition of the Annals of the Four Masters, has been carefully 
consulted ; the statistics of the several parishes are given from 
the records of the State Paper Office and the Ordnance Survey ; 
and transcripts from the archives of continental libraiies are 
introduceil, where it was necessary to establish the truth of 
some things previously imcertain. Our legends and traditions 
are dying away, the customs and habits of the olden time are 
nearly extinct, but in order to preserve some of them from total 
oblivion I thought it well to insert a few in this collection. 
They will be foimd trustworthy, for they too have been ob- 
tained from the best sources, and carefully examined. Not the 
least difficulty I experienced was to jsondense the materials at 
my disposal, so as to give the greatest amount of matter in the 
least possible space, and thus by confining the size of the work 
within moderate limits, and consequently its cost, to place it 
within the reach of all. Whatever intrinsic 'merits it may 
possess, they are left to develop themselves. 

20TS, ^6^1867. 



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INiSHOWElSr. 



Chaptbr I. 
INTEODUCTION. 



The ancient territory of Inishowen is now a barony of the 
County of Donegal, and in it is Malin Head, the most northern 
point of Ireland. Inishowen lies between the parallels of 
56° and 65*' 22' 10^ north latitude, and between 6° 48' and 
7° 31' west longitude. Its length is 26 miles, and greatest 
breadth about 25 miles. It comprises an area of 197,860 
statute acres, or about 309 square miles. There are 
246a. 3r. 27p. of the above under water, being the area of a 
few small lakes, and the tideway of one or two rivers. Its 
population, according to the census of 1861, was 45,675. 

On its northern shores is the Atlantic Ocean ; Lough Foyle 
forms its eastern boundary, and Lough Swilly its western. It 
is eonnecfced with the mainland on the south, and is, therefore, 
not an inis, or island, as itd name implies, but a peninsula. 
Its southern limit, however, is not so well defined ; some say 
it waft formed by a Hue drawn from Lough Swilly through the 
present town of Manorcunningham to Carrigans, on the river 
Foyle ; while others suppose it did not extend so far south. 

Bearding its southern boundary we learn, by the Ordnance 
Survey that, " about half the parish of Templemore, or what 
is generally called the northern liberties of Londonderry, was 
comprised in Inishowen, before the formation of the County of 
Londonderry, as is evident from an inquisition taken in Derry 
in the seventh year of the reign of Janitn L, from wliich it ap- 
pears tbat a jury composed of resident English and acGieiit Irish 
natives, of the principal septs of the diatrttrt, ' did uixm their 
oaths find and present that the auncient uttd kDO^^'ne n^^nri^^s of 
the country of Inishowen, alias O^Doghertiea cotrntrey, 
(O'Dogherty was placed in the lordship of tJie peniMiilA ^t the 
conunencement of the fifteenth century) to the st^iatjfkucL souths 
east, are and have been, tyme out of mjiidtj, a@ JjlBowfctli, ^"^i- 

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INISHOWEN. 



from the part or braunch of Lough Swilly, on the weste and 
gouth-west parte of Birt, thorough the midst of a bog which 
eitendeth to Lough Lappan (O'Lappan's Lake) from a well or 
spring upon Mullaghknockemona^ and from the topp of that 
mountayne the meare extended throup^h a small bog, which 
runneth alonge the top of the hill of Ardenemahill, and soe to 
the top of the hill of Knockenagh, upon the easte part of which 
hill ariseth the streame of Altbally M*Eowertie, which runneth 
a meare betweene Bally Mac Botoertie in Inniskowen, and parte 
of the landes of the Derry and GFarrowgarle to the cawsfy under 
Ellogh, and so down thorough the bog to Logh Swilly, and 
from the foresaid cawsy the meare of Tnishowen aforesaid is 
thorough the midst of the Bog to Lough Foile.' " 

The principal headlands are Inishowen Head at the entrance 
to Lough Foyle ; Malin Head, Dunaff Head, at the entrance to 
Lough SwiUy, and Neid'a Point on the Swilly. Along nearly 
the whole of the northern coast are picturesque precipices and 
rocky cliffs of a bold and romantic character. 

Off the coast are the following islands : — Inistrahal, on which 
is a light-house, situated eight miles east of Malin Head ; the 
G-arve Islands, still nearer to the shore ; Glasheady, off the 
Clonmany coast ; and the island of Inch in Lough Swilly. 

The bays are — Moville Bay, a well sheltered and spacious 
sheet of water ; Culdaff Bay, adapted for the coasting trade, 
but little used ; Culoort Bay, in Malin ; Strabreagy Bay, rather 
of the nature of a gulf, the entrance to which is narrow, the 
tides rapid, and the coast on each side ver^ rocky. Though 
well sheltered, and affording safe anchorage, Strabreagy ia, on 
account of its dangerous bar, unfit for vessels which draw much 
water. Mariners have often mistaken it for Lough Swilly, 
which has caused many shipwrecks. Westward on the Clon- 
many coast are TuUagh Bay, Eockstown Bay, and Leenan Bay, 
an inlet of the Swilly. 

MOUNTAINS, PLAINS, AND VALLEYS. 

Leaving out the promontory of Malin Head, Inishowen 
has something of a triangular shape, with the base turned to 
the north. A ridge of mountains runs along each of the sides 
of this triangle, leaving a comparatively narrow margin on the 
east and west sloping down to the water. The western chain 
is the highest and most precipitous, and includes the Fahan, 
Desertegney, and Clonmany mountains, and terminates at 
Dunaff. On the east are the Iskaheen and Moville mountains, 

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INTRODUCTION. 



sloping off gently to Tnishowen Head. The former are famous 
in the annals of the private distiller, as affording dews more 
potent than Cognac, and sweeter than mead. The north is 
enclosed by the Glengad and Malin ridge, running from east 
to west, and terminating at PoUin Strand. This chain is not 
quite continuous, a link having apparently been snapped by 
some violent convulsion of nature, separating the Isle of Doagh 
&om Malin, with which th^e is sufficient reason to believe 
it was once connected, and permitting the waters of the Atlantic 
to enter in the breach, and to form the gulf or rather inland lake 
of Strabreagy. From the apex of the triangle above-named a 
central range runs northward, with spurs that shoot off east 
and west, towards Olenaganon t!>n the one haaid, and the high 
lands of Ooolcross and the Clonmany mountains on the other. 
The culminating point of this range is Slieve Snaght, which 
overlooks a.11 the others, as a lofty tower in ihe midst of a city 
smiles on the insignificance of the surrounding buildings. By 
the Ordnance Survey, the summit of Slieve -Snaght is 2,019 
feet above the level of the sea ; but on Bett's map of Ireland 
its elevation above sea level is given as 2,232 feet. Taking 
it at the latter, the circle bounding the observer's view from 
its summit would be traced by a radius of 67 miles, and would 
contain within its limits some 10,000 square miles of the 
earth's siurface. Its east and west sides are steep and difficult 
of ascent, bjut it is more accessible on the north and souths 
On the top is a level space of considerable extent ; here, too, 
is a cairn erected by the Surveyors of the Board of Ordnance ; 
and a little lower are the remains of the huts which afforded 
them shelter during their stay on the moimtain. Not far from 
the cairn is a well of water. The views from this mountain, 
on a fine day, are very extensive and highly interesting. To 
the north and west is the blue Atlantic, with its ceaseless 
pulsations, rolling along in league-long billows. Turn around, 
and Antrim, Derry, Tyrone, and West Donegal unfold liiem- 
selves to our wondering gaze ; the Giant's Causeway, Downhill, 
MagilUgan, Beneveny, the heights around Londonderry, Horn 
Head, Dunfanaghy, the deep indentations of the ocean on that 
romantic coast, such as Sheep Haven and Mulroy water, Fannet, 
sacred to the memory of St. Columb, and Tory Island, his favor- 
ite retreat, are plainly perceptible. All around the spectator 
is Inishowen itself ; its hills, dales, valleys, lakes, and livers 
Bpread out ajs in a map. Between the mountains, or emboiomed 

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INISHOWEN. 



among them, are glens, cloons (valleys), meens (narrow valleys), 
glacks (secluded nooks), and narrow passes, with lakes of limpid 
water teeming with eel and trout, formed to tempt as well as 
to reward the attentions of the angler. 

The only plain <rf any considerable extent in Inishowen is 
Maghtogher,* or the plain of springs. Conceive a line drawn 
from the southern shoulder of Cruck-na-coille-dare (the hill of 
oak woods,) on which, by the way, is a considerable stripe of 
natural wood to remind one of the primitive forests with which 
the country was once clad ; conceive, I say, a line drawn from 
this point to the bridge of Gleneely (the lime vale), another 
from said bridge to the Croah (stack) of Glengad, another from 
Oroah to Magherard, Isle of Doagh, and a fourth from 
Magherard to Cruck-na-coille-dare, aforesaid, and you have the 
boundary of the plain of Maghtogher, in shape a quadrilateral, 
one of the diagonals ef which is about eight miles, the other 
six. There is considerable indication of the ocean wave having 
at one time rolled across a portion of this plain &om Culdaff 
to Binion Hill, isolating Malin, with which, as I have stated, 
Doagh Isle was most probably connected. On the Glengad 
coast an old beach may be traced at a considerable distance 
from the present sea line, and fully 50 feet elevation above its 
level, which goes evidently to show that the sea has retired. 
Again, along the course I have named, stand the '* Isles of 
Grellagh,'' which reared their heads above the ancient deep ; 
but towards Tulnabrattly, on the leading road from Camdonagh 
to Clonmany, the evidence of the action of the waves on the 
rocks, and traces of the coast line are quite appar^at. The 
rivers are generally short and rapid. There are two which 
empty themselves into the sea at Buncrana ; the Clonmany 
River, which rises in Meendoran Lough, and is joined by the 
Ballyhallon, near the town of Clonmany, and which empties 
itself into the sea at Binion ; the two which pass Camdonagh, 
on its eastern and western side, and empty themselves into the 

* The Annals of the Four Masters specify that the plain of Magh- 
tochair was cleared (of wood) in the reign of Nemedins, whose colony 
arrived in Ireland in the year 1154 B.C. Dr. O'Donovan says — 
" Magh'tochair means the plain of the Canseway. This was the name 
of a plain at the foot of SUabh-Sneaoht, anglieh Slieve Snaght, in the 
barony of Inishowen, and eonnty of Donegal, which was anciently a 
part of Tir-Eoghain or Tyrone. The church of Domhnachmor-Mnighe-. 
tochair, near the Tillage of Camdonagh, is referred to in the Tripartitej 
Life of St. Patrick as in this plain.'' 



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FIRST COLONISTS. 



sea at Strabreagy ; the Culdaff Eiver, flowing into Culdaff 
Bay ; and the Braddagh, at Moville, are the principal 

The lakes are, Meentagh Lake, Meendoran Lough, Meedian- 
more Lake, in MaJin ; Moneydarragh Lake, LoQghcunn, 
Ballyamet Lough, Lough Fad, and the Kound Lough in Urris 
Mountaina 

According to the Catholic divisions, there are the following 
parishes, viz. : — Upper Fahan, Burt, and Inch (united). Lower 
Fahan and Dysertegney (united), Clonmany, Donagh, Cloncha, 
Culdaff, Moville, and Iskaheen, 

According to the Protestant divisions, tiiere are twelve 
benefices. Eight of these, namely. Upper Fahan, Dysertegney, 
Clonmany, Donagh, Cloncha, Culdaff, Lower Moville, and 
Upper Moville, are Rectories ; and four, namely, Burt, Inch, 
Lower Fahan, and Muff, are perpetual Curacies. 



Chapter IL 
F^irst Colonists — Parthalon^s Expedition — 77ie Colons/ of 
NefmMius — The Firbolgs — The Twitha de DanaiTis — Ith — 
The Milesians — The Three Collas — Defeat of the CoUas by 
the sons of Niall of the Nine Hostages — Ennis-Owen, 

O'Flaherty, following the annals of Clonmacnoise, fixes the 
arrival of the first colonists in Ireland under PartibisJon, in the 
year of the world 1969. Parthalon, says Walsh, having landed 
with his colony in Ireland, divided the Island between his four 
sous, Er, Orbha, Fearon, and Ferghna ; but, after three 
handred years' residence in the country, his posterity perished 
by a plague, after which the country remained uniiJiabited for 
thirty years. 

According to O'Flagherty,* Nemedius, great grand-nej^ew 
of Parthalon, having learned the tragix; end of his relations in 
Ireland, embarked with thirty-four transports, carrying 1020 
persons, besides his wife and four sons, and took possession of 
the island. After twelve years, his wife, Macha, died, and was 
buried at Ardmach ; from which circumstance Armagh takes 
its name. The colony of Nemedius was overthrown by the 
Fomorians. Jobath, grandson of Nemedius, led a remnant of 
his people into north Germany, and from these, according to 
Keating, were descended the Tuatha de Danains. 

* Ogygia, part 2, p. 66. 

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iinsHowss. 



la some time after, the FirbdlgB or Belgian^ another people 
of Britain, to the number ei &yWO men, eoinTnanded by five 
chisfiy eith^ bj defeat or desertion ^of the FomorianSy. took 
poouaaioiA of the island.^* They diyided it into fi^e pufte^ 
vhich gave rxae to the p^Ltarohy. Their dominian lasted eighty 
years, nndernine kings, the last of whom, Eogha, married Taiita,. 
dau^^ter of a Spanish prince, who gave name to tilia place of 
her borial, atkU called Tailton, in Meath. t 

In the reign of Eogha, the last of the Urbolg kings, the 
Tnatha de Danains made a descent npon Ireland, gave battle 
to, and defeated the Firbol^ at Partey, in the County of Mayo. 
The Hiuathe De Danians, noted magicians, arrived here from 
C<»nwaU, after haying passed through Norway and Denmark, 
and brought with them that celebrated stone which they used 
at the coronation of their Kings, and which was afterwards 
borrowed by Fergus I., of Scotland. It was preserved in the 
Abbey of Scone, carried off by Edward I., of England, and 
placed in the coronation chair in Westminster — Lia-Fail, or 
stone of destiny. Inishowen, from its natural defences, formed 
a safe retreat for the De Daaains ; here, accordingly, they built 
the stronghold of Elagh, where their King, Kearmada, died, 
and where his sons, Eathur, Teahiir, and Keahur, reigned one 
year each alternately, on the arriyal of the Milesians 

Aooordi&g to the Psalter oi Cashel, this colony held possession 
of the ifdand for the tspai^ of one hundred and ninety-seTen 
years, under seven of their kings, of whom the three sons of 
Kearmada, who represented their father, and who ruled one 
year alternately for a space of 30 years, were the last. Those 
three brothers, who were married to three sisters, took surnames 
fi'om the different idols which they worshipped ; and Ireland, 
which previously was called Inisfail, changed its name with 
the reigning queen, and was called alternately Banba, Fodla, 
and Eire. Eathur, who espoused Banba^ was sumamed 
Maccuill, from the hazel-tree which he adored. Teahur married 
Fodhb, and worshipped the plough. He was called Mac-Keaght. * 
Keahur, who married Eire, took the sun for his divinity, and 
was called Mac-Greine, which means the son of the sun. 

One morning early in Autumn, about 1^000 years before the 
Christian era, a venerable man might be seen prostrate on the 
beach at the foot of that promontory known as Inishowen Head. 

* Mac-Geoghegan. f Ogygia, part 3, chap. 9. , 

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FiROT Qotosmra, , /^ 



He knelt th^re to worship tibe sem god — to pour forth the 
gxatitudQ oi his hcarl to N^tnne. for the happy terminatioii of 
& Icmg and perilous vogrc^gei His ship rode at anchor before 
him. No elond darkened the de^ hlne ol the heavens, the air 
lias csJnv tJbe ekj lustrom^ the sun had jnst risen, and 
bvmifidiied with daz^ing hrightneas the gentle ^ ripple which 
f^ajed on the surface e£ the waters. The stranger was Ith, 
undo of Milesiiuv ^^ kad sailed from Btaganza,. in Spain, in 
quest of the most western isle of the world, which a soo&sayer' 
had deelared ^nld he^ the :6nal resting-<plaee of his nation. 

Many were the niOTitions and migrations of this people. 
Niul, son of reniusrFarsa, King of Seythia, son of Baath, son 
of Magog, second son of Japhetj son of Noah, made a voyage 
into Egypt, where he married Scota, daughter of Pharoah 
Cincris, and had issue a son, who was called Gaodal-Glaa^ or 
Gadelas, from whom was descended the Gladelians, Having 
lived in Egypt for three generations, the Gadeliana greatly in^ 
creased in numbers, and were obliged, from the jealous fear of 
the Egyptians, to depart, which they did, sailing to Crete, now 
Candia« From Crete they proceeded to Seythia, thence in the 
course of time to North Africa, where they remained for eight 
generations. From Africa they erossed to Spain, then inhabited 
by the descendants of Tubals son of Japhet, Here, by right 
of conquest, they became masters of the northern province, and 
built the town of Braganza, so called from their chief, Breogan, 
grandfather of Milesius. Milesius in turn became chief of- the 
Gadelians, was twice married and the father of eight sons, 
Donn, Aireach, Heber-Fionn, Amhergin, Ir, Colpa, Aranann, 
and Heremon. He travelled much, did Milesius, and greatly 
distinguished himself as a general and warrior, partieularly in 
the army of the King of Egypt, against the Ethiopians ; and, 
after many dangers, toils, and difficulties, returned to Spain, 
where he ended his days in peace. * 

Soon after his demise a famine arose, which determined the 
Milesians to fit out an expedition to seek that fruitful Isle, that 
promised land, which the chief Druid predicted should be theirs. 
Accordingly, a vessel was fitted out with 150 soldiers onboard, 
and to Ith, recommended by his wisdom and experience, was 
given the command. Having successfully overcome all the 

^his accotmt of the MUesianB is founded on statements contained 
in LeaTar-drom-sneachta, or the White Book, cited by Keating, and 
which was written in the time of Paganism. ^ j 

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M^^^»^»^».»»^i^i^.^».< m » 



difficulties and anxieties attendant on navigation at this early 
period, Ith landed at the place above-mentionedy on that lovely 
morning. His devotions over, he ascended the cliff, and, with 
his footsteps brushing the dew off the verdant turf, proceeded 
to the summit of a gentle eminence, from which he beheld tlie 
first glimpse of Erinn. The whole face of the country ac- 
knowledged the lavish kindness of Nature. Forests of stately 
larees, oaks, larches, elms, and beeches, ran along the hil] sides, 
herds of lowing cattle fattened on the plains, and prosperity 
and quiet content reigned in the hamlets of the peasantry. 

At this period the country was in the possession, as has been 
stated, of the Tuatha de Danains, and, in reply to Ith's inquiries, 
he was informed by the people that their ruling princes were 
then at Oileag-Nead* (Aileach). Escorted by one hundred 
of his soldiers, he proceeded to Aileach, where, on his arrival, 
he was honourably received by the princes above-named, who, 
perceiving he was a man of much wisdom, appointed him arbiter 
in a difference which existed between them as to the right of 
succession. Ith settled their differences to their own satisfaction, 
congratulated them on the fruitfulness of the soil and the 
healthiness of the climate, and took his leave. But his wisdom, 
or rather his exercise of it in this case, proved his ruin, for the 
De Danians, in dread that going to his own country he might 
speedily raise an army to subdue them, pursued and overtook 
him at Moy-Ith,+ where an engagement took place, in which 
Ith was wounded. He died on his voyage homewards, and his 
son carried the body to Spain to inspire his people with revenge 
against the princes of the western isle. The Milesians im- 

* Oileag-Nead means, literally, The Swanks Nest, 

f This is MacGeoghegan's account of it. 

Dr. O'Donovan says — " Maighe-Ithe was the name of a place near 
Longh Swilly, in the barony of Raphoe, and county of Donegal ; but 
it is now obsolete. Magh-Ithe is the name of a plain in the barony of 
Baphoe, along the River Finn." He likewise says " Inishowen was 
anciently a part of Tir-Eoghain or Tyrone." Tir-Eoghain, of course, 
means, literally, the country or territory of Eoghain, not simply the 
present county Tyrone. The situation of the plain where Ith was 
wounded has given rise to some controversy. Some say it was Magh- 
Ith, along the river Finn ; others that it was in the county of Tyrone. 
It is most likely the incident in question occurred near Lough SwiUy, 
in the place more anciently known as Maighe-Ithe ; not on the plain of 
the Finn, which seems to have been named after it ; nor in what is now 
known as the county of Tyrone ; though, doubtless, when Inishowen 
was part of Tir-Eoghain, Maighe-Ithe was also a part of U. 

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IIBST COLOmSTS. 11 



mediately equipped a fleet of sixty sail, in which the whole 
colony embarked and sailed for Ireland. Arriving at the south 
coast they were overtaken by a fearful hurricane, which 
scattered their fleet, so that not two of them remained together. 
Donn perished with his entire crew, Arannan was driven to sea, 
Ir was drowned, and his body found near Dingle, in Kerry, 
Aicach and Colpa were wrecked in Brogheda Bay, Heremon 
landed at the mouth of the Boyne, and Heber, Amergin, and 
their attendants, landed in Kerry. 

The dangers £rc«n wind and wave over, they next encountered 
the hostile De Danains, first at Slieve Mish, in Kerry, under 
the princess Eire, where they (the Milesians) obtained a victory ; 
next at Tailton, in Meath, where, after a hard-fought battle, 
the De Danains were completely defeated, and their three 
princes killed. Thus were the De Danains overthrown, after 
having governed Ireland for 197 years. On the division of the 
country by the Milesians, the north was given to Heber-Donn, 
the son of Ir, whose descendants were called Irians, and who 
resided in Elagh until the time of Kimbaath, who, at the desire 
of his queen, built the palace of Emhuan-Macha, near Armagh, 
and made it his abode. The first of the Irians who attained 
the dignity of monarch of Ireland was Bory, surnamed the 
Great, 87 years before the birth of Christ. They were so proud 
<^ this monarch's glory that they named the whole sept after 
him ClanrM Rory — children of Bory. * The Clanna Bory 
reigned, almost uninterruptedly, in Ulster till the fourth century 
of the Christian era. In 323 the three CoUas, sons of Eocha- 
Dubhlein, usurped the government of Ireland, having made 
war against the monarch, in which they were successful, and 
the oldest of the three was proclaimed in his stead ; but, after 
a reign of four years, they were obliged to quit Uie country, 
and take shelter with the King of the Picts. Hearing after- 
wards that the King of Ireland became merciful to them, they 

* From the Clanna-Borys are descended the MacGinnises, the 
MacGartans, the O'Mordhans (O'More), O'Connors-Eerry, O'Loghlins, 
OTarrells, MacGrannills or MacRanells, Mac-an-Bhairds (Wards), 
0*Lawlors, MagilUganSi Scanlans, BrosnaghanSi O'Gathils, O'Conways, 
Casies, TiemySi Nestors, O'MacCachains, O'Lyns, 0*Hargans, 
O^Flahertys, Borcys, O'Haallachains, MacSheanloichs, O^Morraius, 
O'Bodachains (Body), O'Doains, O'Mainings, MacGUmers, O'Eennys, 
0*EenellyB, O^Eeithemys, MacEochaids, O'CarroUans, the Mac-an- 
Gaiynions (Smith), and others. — MacOeoghegan's Jrelandt chap, 7, 
p. 118. 



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12 INISHOWEI^. 



returned and obtained his pardon. Having no possessions, the 
monarch advised them to establish themselves in some part of 
the kingdom, by right of conquest, and, as he had an old grudge 
against the people of Ulster, he directed them to enter that 
province, sword in hand, and reduce it, promising to assist them 
with troops. On their arrival they were joined by malcontents 
to the number of 7,000 ; with these and the monarch's troops 
they commenced action, and, after a seven days' fight, Fergus- 
Fodha, King of Ulster, was killed, his army cut to pieces, and 
the field remained in possession of the conquerers. Forthwith 
they ruined the palace of Eamhain, and formed the kingdom of 
Oriel, comprising the present counties of Louth, Armagh, 
Monaghan, and part of Down and Antrim, and drove the 
Clanna Eory into Derry, Tyrone and Donegal. 

About the end of the fourth century the rule of the Collas* 
in Ulster was put an end to by the four sons of the monarch, 
Niall the Great, who entered the northern country in arms, 
and took possession of Tyrone and Donegal, with the neighbour- 
ing territories. To Carbre was allotted Teftiia, Enna received 
Kinnel-Enna, and Owen and Conal Gulban divided the County 
of Donegal between them. This peninsula was a portion of 
Eoghain's or Owen's territory ; hence its name, Ennis-Owen, or 
the island of Owen, though, strictly speaking, and, as before 
observed, it is not an island, for the Foyle and Swilly, which 
bound it on the east and west respectively, are separated by an 
isthmus nearly four miles wide. The rest of Owen's possessions 
was Kinel-Eoghain, a portion of Northern Hy-Niellia, compris- 
ing the County of Tyrone, afterwards the domain of the 
O'Neills, who were descended from him. The remainder of 
County Donegal fell to Conal Gulban, and was named Tircon- 
nell. Prince Eoghain repaired the ancient castle of Elagh, in 
which he afterwards resided, and from which he governed the 
mixed races of Irians and Hy-Nialls with much happiness and 
tranquillity. 

* From the Three Collas are descended the MacBoniiells of Ireland 
and Scotland, the MacMahons, Magnires, O'Hanlnans, Magees, 
O'Floiims-Tuirtre, O'Ceallaigs (O'Kellys), 0*Maddins, O'Niallains, 
MacEagains, Neachtains, Shiehys, McDowels, Kerrins and Nenys.^— 
Mac GeogJiegarCs Ireland^ chap, 7} p. 118. 



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v 



ANTIQUITIES. 13 



Chapter III. 
Religion of the Ancient Irish — Cromleachs — Cromleach of 
Magheramore — Cromleachs of Cvldaff — CrwaLeach of Drung 
— Of the " Scalp" — Druidical Temples and Circles — Temple 
of Larahirl — of Carrowmore^ Qlentogher — of Oreinan — 
Caves associated with Druidical Remains — Pillar Stones or 
DdLlans — Pillar Stones and Caves in Dona^gh — Pillar Stones 
and Caves in Cvldaff — Mechanical Arts of the Ancient 
Irish — Cairns — Lisses, 

The ancient Irish were Fire "Worshippers ; and their supersti- 
tions consisted in believing the hills, rocks, and woods, peopled 
with hosts of fairies. They chose the summit of a hill or 
eminence for sacrificing upon, probably with the view of having 
the sacred fire visible at distant places, and here they erected 
the temple, cromleach, circle, or pillar stone. Cromleach meant 
stone or altar of their god ; it might also mean a slanting 
stone from crom, a downward slope, and leach, a flagstone. 
They were usually dedicated to the sun. They vary in size, 
but consist generally of an altar-stone, lying nearly horizontal, 
and supported by three upright ones, with an open passage 
underneath for cattle and children to pass under the sacred fire. 
'Twas this sort of worship which prevailed among the Israelites 
when they were reproached for passing their sons and daughters 
under the fire to Moloch, one of the names given to the sun. 
At Magheramore, in the parish of Clonmany, is a very perfect 
specimen of the cromleach, consisting of a table stone of above 
30 tons, supported by three upright pillars. It is here called 
Fionn M^CooFs finger-stone. 

The following observations on the cromleach are taken from 
ffaU^s Ireland : — " The altar known to English antiquaries by 
the Greek name of Trilithon (three stones), received in Ireland 
the appropriate name of Cromleac, or stone of Crom, and a 
particular class of the priesthood was named Crwmthear, It 
consisted of a great incumbent rock, or flag, in its rude state, 
untouched by chisel or hammer, and rested on a number of 
pillar stones ; sometimes we find the altar-stone resting at one 
end on the ground, whilst the other was lifted upon a single 
supporter ; and again, but rather rarely, the natural rock is 
adopted as the basis." 

But to return to the cromleach of Magheramore. In after 
times, when Christian sects hated each other for the love of 

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14 IKISHOWEN. 

God, and when the weak were obliged to fly from the oppres- 
sion of the strong, this same stone often served as an altar for 
offering thereon the Catholic Mass. A garden convenient, yet 
known by the name of Garra-na-sogarth, was the priest's 
hiding-place, and scouts were posted on the hills, to give notice 
of the approach of danger, while the people knelt at their 
devotions beneath the blue vault of heaven. 

There is no locality in the north of Ireland, as I believe, 
richer in druidical remains than the parish of Culdaff At 
a place named Doon-Owen, near Carthage, in this parish, there 
is a magnificent cromleach. It is situated on a cliff ; it faces 
the east, and overlooks the ocean. In this parish, too, is 
another cromleach, named Cara, or Cloughtogal. Lt consists of 
an altar stone, about two tons weight, supported by four up- 
right ones, four feet high. The temple in connexion with this 
altar is in a good state of preservation, and consists of three 
separate apartments — ^that occupied by the altar, and two outer 
ones — ^and the whole was enclosed by a wall. At Drung, in 
the parish of Upper Moville, are the remains of a cromleach, 
and on the mountain named the Scalp, in the parish of Upper 
Fahan, there is one in excellent preservation. 

On the left hand side of the road from Culdaff to Moville, 
and at the distance of a few hundred yards from Bocan Catho- 
lic Church, is a beautiful specimen of the Druidical Temple, 
It is situated on a rising ground, which commands a view of 
the sea and the adjoining country. It consists of a number of 
stones placed in a perpendicular and circular form. Druidical 
Temples were circular, for the principal deity of the Druids 
was the sun ; and, like the ancient Germans, they entertained 
such a sublime idea of the majesty of the deity that they did 
not confine him within the limits of space, hence their temples 
had no roof, and the stones which formed the circle, in almost 
all cases, stood at short intervals from each other. The circle 
was availed of for other purposes : thus it served as a court of 
justice and as an observatory, in which they marked the rising 
and setting of the heavenly bodies, the seasons of the year, and 
periods of the day and night. In the locality last named, in 
the Parish of Culdaff, there seems to have been an assemblage 
of Druidical temples, for at Larahirl are a number of stones, 
which stand at intervals from one another, and which form an 
oblong temple, 27 feet in length by 12 feet broad. This ob- 
long is surrounded by a circle of 70 yards in circumference, the 



yGooQle 






ANTIQUITIES. 15 



stones of which are similar to those in the internal figure, anel 
placed at like intervals. This temple at Larahirl desei-ves 
special remark, on account of the combination of the oblong 
and circle which it exhibits. At Carrowmore. in Glentogher, 
there is a small Druidical circle. The Temple of Greinan, near 
Burt, next claims our attention. It is situated on the summit 
of the hill of that name, and at an elevation of 802 feet above 
sea level. 

From this mountain many splendid views may be obtained. 
The whole surface of the Foyle is distinctly visible, so likewise 
is that of the Swilly. Erragil and the Gap of Barnismore, 
M*Gilligan and Beneveney, Tyrone and central Inishowen, are 
equally within the reach of vision. 

The talented Colonel Blacker, who was the first to discover 
this ancient remains of Greinan, considers it to have been a 
temple for the worship of the sun, and supports his theory by 
argument and proof. The following is the accorajjiifihed 
ColoneFs description of it : — 

" To the casual observer the first appearance of the edifice is 
that of a truncated cairn, of extraordinary dimensions ; but, on 
a closer inspection, particularly since the clearing away of fallen 
stones, &c, which took place under my direction, it will be 
found a building constructed with every attention to masonic 
regularity, both in design and workmanship. A circular wall, 
of considerable thickness, encloses an area of eighty- two feet 
in diameter. Judging from the number of stones which have 
fallen on every side, so as to form, in fact, a sloping glacis of 
ten or twelve feet broad all round it, this wall must have been 
of considerable height — probably from ten to twelve feet — but 
its thickness vaiies — that portion of it extending from north to 
south, and embracing the western half of the circle, being but 
ten or eleven feet ; whereas, in the correspondfhg or eastern 
half, the thickness increases to sixteen or seventeen, particularly 
at the entrance. To discover this entrance was one of the first 
objects of my attention, and having directed a clearance to be 
made as nearly due east as possible, a passage was found, in 
breadth about 4 feet, flagged at the bottom with flat stones, 
equal in width to the opening itself, and fiUed with great 
regularity. This passage was covered witji flags, of very large 
dimensions, which, however, we foimd fallen in ; the main lintel 
on the inner side was formed of a single stone, six feet 3 inches . 
in length, and averaging fourteen inches square in thickness. 

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16 nriBHowEK. 



Within the wall, to the right and left of this entrance (though 
not communicating with it), are carried two curious passages, 
about S feet wide by 4 feet in height, neatly covered at top with 
flags, in the same manner as the entrance. These passages 
extend through half the circumference of the building, terminat- 
ing at the northern and southern points ; that running 
•outhward was found to communicate with the area, or interior 
of the place, by an aperture extremely disproportioned to the 
passage itself, being merely wide enough to permit the entrance 
of a boy ; this aperture is due south, and the passage, as it 
i^proadies the eastern part of the building, becomes gradually 
narrow, being not more than six inches wide at its termination 
adjoining the entrance. The approach to that gallery or pas- 
sage, wending northward, appears to hare been from above, 
there being no signs of an aperture communicating with the 
area, as in the case of the other passage just mentioned; 
whereas, on clearing away the fallen stones, to the north- 
ward of the main entrance within the building, we dis- 
oovered a staircase, eighteen inches wide, leading from the 
level of the area to the top of the wall. Hiis passage extends 
to the northern point, but, differing from the other, it carries 
ita breadth the entire way. On either side of the entrance 
passage, a few feet within, appears a square nidie, or what 
Biaaona would call a double revel of four inches deep. At first 
flight it seemed as if they had been the entrances to the two 
passages already mentioned, and which had been for some 
eaoiie built up, but on examination this was found not to be the 
OMe ; they were evidently formed at the original building of the 
wall, and I am inclined to think may have served for the pur- 
pose dt enabling those within to close the passage from above 
by means of something in the nature oi a portcullis. From a 
careful examination of the wall in different places throughout 
its circumference, it appears to have been parapeted, the space 
between the parapet and the interior of the circle being (as was 
vsual in amphitheatres) allotted to spectators, and accessible 
by the staircase already noticed. In the centre of the area are the 
r&maiim of the altar, or place of sacri^e, approached from the 
entrance to the building by a flagged pathway, which was die- 
\ sobered by rauing the turf by which it is overgrown ; around 
\ these are the ruins of a square building, but of comparatively 
, modern construdaon — in fact, the place was resorted to I 
bf the Boman Catholics in the vicinity^ for the purposes oi. I 



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AKTIQUITIBS. 17 



worship, notil some forty years back, when a small chapel 
for their accommodation was erected at the foot of the 
mountain — a certain proof of the traditionary sanctity of th€ 
^oU The stones of which the building \& formed are of tha 
common grey schistus, but evidently selected with considerable 
attention as to size ; and, considering their exposure to the 
Atlantic storms for so many centuries, the decomposition is 
wonderfully small In those parts of the wall which have been 
protected by the accumulation of the debris from above, the 
chiselling is yet sharp and the squareness perfect The circum- 
stance of its being a stone building adds considerably to the 
antiquarian interest which Greenan is calculated to excite." 

We beg to notify that at the base of the hill are several 
caves, which, no doubt, were associated with the stmetore on 
the summit We find, too, caves of a similar description asso- 
ciated with Druidical remains, some of which we stiaU notice 
presently* The caves at the base of Greinan hill, now blocked 
tip, were described to Mr. and Mrs. Hall by a gentleman who 
Altered them in 1838, as follows : — 

''The chamber into which we first obtained entrance is 
somewhat dilapidated, and appears to consist of the original 
apartment of the buildii^ and of a sloping passage leading to 
it It is much encumbered with loose clay and stones, and 
declines a good deal towards the lower extremity, where we 
were able to stand perfectly upright, although we were at first 
obliged to creep in on our hands and knees. The form of this 
dbamber is oblong, or rather oval. 

'' On the arrival of lanterns, we proceeded into the second 
apartment. The passages between the first and second, as well 
as between the second and third apartments, resemble much the 
mouth of a large pipe, or the apertures (called in Ireland 
* Kiln-logies') by which the fire is introduced into lime-kilns. 
These entrances are compactly built, of large stones, and they 
both decline a little towards their lower extremity — a r^nark 
which is also applicable to all three apartments. The second 
chamber is nearly circular, but approaches in form to the oval. 
Here, as in the other apartments, the floor is of clay, and the 
walls are regularly built of large stones, without mortar or 
cement of any kind, and incline perceptibly inwards at the top 
and bottom. In all these apartments the ceilings are com- 
posed of immense flags resting on the walls on either side, and 
smaller stones are advanced to support them in one or two in 

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18 iNisnowEX. 



stances where tlie flags were too abort to cover the whole 
extent. The stones employed in the construction of the build- 
ing are the common schist of the country, intermixed with whift 
stones and some quartz. The walls were found by measurement 
to average about three feet in thickness. The passage between 
the second and third chambers branches off to the east, and is 
situated on the right, immediately as you enter from the first 
apartment. In the corner of the second chamber, between the 
two passages, and nearly on a level with the ceiling, there is 
built a recess in the wall answering to the purposes of a cup- 
board, and similar to the * boles' which are placed in the walls 
of Irish cabins. The architecture is the same as that of the 
rest of the building ; it extends to the north east ; the entrance 
is nearly square, but the interior is circular. The floor of thfe 
third apartment is one foot eight inches below the end of the 
entrance passage, of which fact the first of us who crawled in 
was informed to his cost, as may readily be imagined. The 
third chamber inins parallel to the second — ^viz., due north and 
south, and its form and architecture are similar, except that 
perhaps the second apartment is more circular.*' 

Having said so much regarding Greinan and its vicinity, we 
will now state some of tlie reasons on which we have founded 
our opinion that it was not the royal residence. Its lofty and 
exposed situation in such a climate would render Xjrreinan un- 
suitable for a dwelling-place. Colonel Blacker supposed, which 
supposition was adopted by Petrie, that the height of the wall 
was but 1 3 f et. ^ Considering its circumference, then, it would 
have been impossible at that height to have closed it in "with 
one stone at the top, or to have given it the bee-hive sha*pe 
which Aileach is said to have had, as described in the poem of 
the Dinnseanchus. That description, therefore, whatever it is 
worth (and which, on the whole, we are inclined to believe is 
very fabulous) is not applicable to Greinan. Moreover, if the 
height of the walls was 13 feet, as stated by Colonel Blacker, 
and not contradicted by Petrie, the structure was unroofed ; 
consequently it could not have been a royal residence. Gratianus 
Lucius says stones were not used at first by the Milesians in 
their buildings, nor was their nse then known to the Britons 
and Gauls. Singular it is that the De Danians should have 
used them if the Britons did not. Ware says the judges of 
the Milesians were called " Brehons," and that they distributed 
justice and decided lawsuits in the open air and on high moun- 

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AHTtQUITIBS. 19 

tains ; also, that they had no walled cities ; that their houses 
were built of wood, and covered with thatch or straw. And 
again, that they always fought in the open air, had no for- 
tified cities, and would have considered it as cowardice to con- 
ceal themselves behind walls in order to defend themselves 
against the enemy. 

The Tuatha de Danains could not have used stones in ths 
erection of their dwellings, otherwise the Milesians, who 
subdued them, would have adopted the custom at once. The 
royal residence of Aileach existed at the time of Ith's arrival 
in the country. It was then called Oileag-Nead. According 
to the Anncds of the Four MaaterSy* Lough Foyle (or Loch- 
Feabhail) did not exist untO 81 years after their arrival, 
consequently the passage in the poem of the Dinnseanchua, 
which says that Aileach was named after a stone carried from 
Lough Foyle, is a poetical fiction or an utter absurdity ; other- 
wise the annalists are in error ; or, this stone, carried from 
Lough Foyle, would have given a name which existed 81 years 
at least before Nature's formation of the Lough ! 

But why ascribe the introduction of cyclopean architecture, 
or the erection of the Druidical Temples, circles, cromleachs, 
and pillar stones, whose remains are observable in every district 
of Ireland, to the Tuatha de Danains? Did they, whose 
authority in Ireland lasted for 197 years only, do all ; and the 
Milesians, who came 1,000 years before the Christian era, and 
who professed Druidical doctrines for 1500 years at least, do 
nothing in that respect ? The idea is simply incredible. 
Nearly so is the supposition that Greinan was constructed by 
the De Danains ; but if erected by them at aU, it must have 
been for a temple of religion, or of justice, or for both, as their 
habitations were not constructed of stone, nor were their houses 
of that material in Cornwall or Anglesea, even when the 
country was first visited by the Bomans, though their temples 
were, as, for example, that of Abury, near Marlborough, in 
Wiltshire, which was, indeed, m many respects like Greinan. 

And well adapted was this hill for a temple of the Druids. 
From its lofty summit the smoke of the sacred fire could have 
been visible to devout worshippers from a distance as they 
turned in prayer to this cynosure of their affections. The 

• Pr. 0*I)onoT«a's editioD/^Yol. I, pp. 25 and 41. 

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20 INlSHOWKSr, 



caves, too, around its base are similar to those wliicli exist in 
the vicinity of Druidical temples. 

The views of those who maintain that Greinan was Aileach 
are fully stated in the Appendix. There can be little doubt, 
however, that the palace of Aileach stood in the towland oi tlist 
name, at a distance of three miles from Greinan, and &t the 
place where O'Doherty erected a castle in the fifteenth century, 
a fragment of which remains. The locality is fairly adapted 
for the purpose, and bears the signs of occupancy and cultiva- 
tion :from the most remote period. Its elevation is somewhat 
greater than the hill of Tara, being 248 feet above the level of 
the sea. It commands a sufficiently extensive view of Tircon- 
nell. Lough Swilly, Inch, and the adjacent country. It ifi 
sheltered from the northern storms by the high ridges of the 
Scalp and the mountains of Iskaheen, and if not the site of 
Aileach castle, the patrimony of the kings who sprung from 
the royal race of Eoghan, a more eligible one could nowhere 
be found within the district. As corroborative of this view 
we may mention that Vi^hen Prince Eoghan, who resided in 
Aileach, died of grief for the loss of his brother, the lord of 
Tirconnell, his body was buried in Iskaheen, which adjoins the 
townland above-named, as related in the Annals of the Four 
Masters. 

The standing stone or pillar- stone, sometimes called Dalian, 
which means a spike, is believed to have been set up for various 
purposes. They sometimes stand singly ; but often in conjunc- 
tion with the Cromleach, or Druidical circle ; they are also 
found in groups, in straight lines, or forming triangles. The 
pillar stone was sometimes used as an object of worship ; at 
others for marking the place where a battle was fought, or 
where a chieftain was interred ; chieftains and princes were also 
inaugurated upon them, and they were used for making 
ceitain boundaries. On some there are Ogham inscriptions, 
circles incised on others ; and the Christian has incised the 
figure of the cross on more. At Cashel, in Glentogher, there 
aie two of these pillar stones ; there is one in Bally loskey, near 
the Workhouse, on the -western face of which the figure of tiie 
Cross has been inscribed. 

Convenient to this pillar stone, and beneath a portion of the 
Workhouse site, are subterranean caves somewhat similar to 
those at Greinan. Beside the stone, surrounded by a low wall 
and a few stunted thorns, is a «mall burying ground, known as 



y Google 



AKTIQt7ITIBS« 21 



Eiilhride. This spot, therefore, was evidently regarded as 
sacred ground both in Pagan and Christian times. 

If we exccfpt the cromleach of Magheramore, (at an altitude 
of 400 feet) previously noticed, 'Clonmany is remarkably deficient 
in Thpuidieal remains ; but, on the confines of Donagh, traces of 
them begin again to appear. Thus, near Magheralahin, at the 
base of Gruoknagalcosh, there is a pillar stone or doilcm in thi& 
parish. South-west of it, at Bally beg, in the parish of Donagh, 
is another ; a third one stands near the house of a man named 
Campbell, at a short distance from Straths Bridge. These 
three mark the angles of what would, be, very nearly, an 
equilateral triangle. A fourth one stands on the farm of 
Mr. John O'Donnell, of Glenmakee ; another triangle would be 
traced by lines connecting this stone with that at Ballybeg and 
at Campbells, and then again with each other. Within the 
latter figure, in the lands of Ardbarrack, there is a remarkable 
group of large stones which, likely, marks the grave of «ome 
person of distinction in times long past. It consists of one 
stone, about four feet in height, and four and one-half feet in 
breadth, standing on its edge erect. Beside this is another in 
a recumbent position, which, no doubt, was once erect also. 
On the ground, with its upper surface on a level with the soil, 
and one end in contact with the standing stone, is a third ; it ia 
7 feet long, 3 feet 4 inches broad, and 5 or 6 inches thick. 
Also, within this triangle, immediately behind Glassalts Na- 
tional School, and at a short distance from the spot last described, 
there is a green knoll in which is a series of caves. Two of 
these have been opened. The opening of one revealed a circular 
shaft of three feet in diameter, and seven feet in depth, cut 
through the solid rock. From the bottx)m of this shaft three 
openings, one to the north, one to the west, and one to the 
south, lead into as many different chambers. The northern and 
western chambers are each about 12 feet long by 5 feet broad, 
but, from the quantity of loose stones and rubbish thrown into 
them since they were opened, I cannot say with any degree of 
accuracy to what depth they have been cut. By stooping a 
little, however, a person can yet easily move through them. 
The southern chamber is of similar design, but smaller than 
either of the others. The second cave was not sunk so deep 
beneath the surface of the earth, and it is now almost filled with 
the same sort of rubbish as was cast into the first. 

Aye now return to the parish of Culdaff, where so much 

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IS IHtSHOWBK. 

remains of the pride of other days. At Cajrowmore, near the 
site of the old monastery, (to be noticed hereafter) tliere is h 
pillar stone, on which is incised a circle, and through this circle 
has been cut a figure of the cross. In an adjoining field, some 
few years ago, a stone coffin was discovered in turning up the 
ground. It consisted of flags laid across and closely adjoining 
each other, forming the bottom. Similar ones, in connexion 
with each other, formed the sides and top^ and the ends were 
composed of a single stone to each. The coffin was six feet 
two inches in length, and when discovered contained the bones 
of a full grown person. 

At Baskill are two upright stones supporting a horizontal 
one laid across from one to the other.* The name of this place 
Implies that it was used as a burying ground, and that a chapel, 
in which was performed the burial service, stood here. About 
four years ago a very curious subterranean cave, or rather 
series of caves, was discovered here by men quarrying stones. 
The entrance to the first compartment was by a circular aper- 
ture, 3 feet in diameter, leading downwards from the surface. 
It was closed by a flag. Descending through this aperture the 
walls of the cavern are found to be irregular. Its dimensions 
about 10 feet long, 7 feet broad, and 5 feet high. From the 
first, a rude Gothic arch, of about 2 feet in height, and the 
same in breadth at the base, cut through solid quartz rock, leads 
to the second. Crawling through this arch, the second is found 
to be much larger, but also irregular. Its dimensions are 30 
feet by 10 by 6. Another passage like the first leads to a 
third cave, and so on to a fourth. Several opinions have been 
advanced as to the use for which these chambers were excavated. 
One theory is that they belonged to the antechristian period, 
and were used as burying places. This is not likely, as no 
remains were found in them. Another theory, and the most 
probable one, is that they were used as places of concealment. 

The leading feature of the Druidical remains which have 
been described is, that associated with them we invariably find 
places of interment, some of which continued to be used after 
the introduction of Christianity, and subterranean caves. The 
latter seem to have served for jdaces of concealment, or as 
'>■■*■■' ■ I . -. 

* It is highly probable that other stones, placed similarly, and forming 
a temple, existed in connexion with these. It is scarcely necessary to 
remind the reader that such was the form of the Dmidical Temple of 
Sioaehexige. 

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MONARCHS OF CINEL-EOGHAN. 23 

depositaries for such property or valuables as were meant to 
be kept extra secure. 

We may remark that considerable proficiency in the me- 
chanical arts was necessary to enable the builders of these 
temples, &c., to construct them. They must have been accus- 
tomed to the use of the wedge, in order to split such large 
masses of stone in the quarries ; with that of the lever to move 
them along to their destination ; and with the inclined plane 
for the purpose of raising them to the required elevation. 

The cairns, of which there were two kinds — ^the burying and 
the simple cairn, were also erected on high places, and on the 
latter class the fires of Baal used to be lighted on festival days. 
The burying cairn was the last resting-place of some mighty 
chieftain, or other illustrious person. At Umgal, parish of 
Cloncah, is shown one of these, said to be the grave of Ossian ; 
and in the neighbourhood are places bearing names similar to 
those mentioned in his poems. 

In those early times, too, were erected the Lisses. Lis sig- 
nifies a fortified house ; it was an artificial mound or hill, 
almost circular, with a flat top and an earthen rampart all 
around the sunnnit. Inside this was the dwelling, which was 
secondly defended by a strong wattle paling, as is at present 
the practice among the Circassians. Inishowen has had its 
Lisses. 



Chapter IV. 



Fr<ym JSt Patrick to Turgesius, 

But to return to Prince Owen and the old castle of Aileach. 
When Owen had lived here about forty-seven years he was 
visited by St. Patrick, then on his mission of converting the 
Irish nation. St. Patrick, we are told, travelled through 
almost every comer of Ireland, always on foot, and he made it 
a point to visit the cfhief of each territory" first, knowing tha* 
should he succeed in converting the lord of the district his ser- 
vants and vassals, as well as his relations, would soon follow 
the example set them by the superior. For this purpose leaving^ 
Connaught he journeyed to Tirconnell from Sligo, through Bun- 
doran and Ballyshannon. Having converted Conal Gulban, Tie 
resolved to proceed to Ailech Nead to meet Owen. Passing 
through Barnesmore Gap, Tir-Aodhe, Magh-Ith, and Deny, he 

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24 TKtSHOWEH. 



arrived in Inishowen. Prince Owen having heard of hia 
coming set out to meet him, and embraced Christianitj with 
all his household in 442. Leaving Elagh the saint crossed the 
Foyle at Culmore, and preached along the Faughan for nearly 
two months. He then returned to Inishowen, where he 
preached for forty days, and founded two churches. The first 
of these he founded on a Sunday, and named it Domnach>Mor* 
Muige-Tochuir, in commemoration, it seems, of the day in 
which he founded it in the vale of the causeway. From this 
the parish of Donagh derives its name, and the church still 
stands on the same spot, though it has undergone alterations 
and repairs at various periods, lastly in 1812. The site is beau- 
tifully picturesque ; it commands a view of the whole of this, the 
only extensive plain in Inishowen, the lough of Strabregy, the 
high ridges of Malin and Croagh, Culdaff Bay, and beyond it 
some of the elevated peaks of the Scottish mountains ; and 
withal it is not perched upon a hill, as were the temples set 
apart for fire apotheosis, but on a gentle eminence about a 
quarter of a mile west of Camdonagh, rising gradually from 
tiie river. It remained for the genius of Christianity to select 
such a delighful place. It was presented to St. Patrick by the 
pious Aidh, grandson of Prince Owen, who requested the saint 
to foimd it, and who afterwards endowed it with land for the 
support of its clergy. MacCarthan, the disciple of St. Patrick, 
was the first bishop of this church. In after times when Cahir 
O'Doherty (I studiously omit the Sir) was subdued, and 
Inishowen became the guerdon of Sir Arthur Chichester, sixty 
acres of good land were reserved for the glebe of this parish by 
James I., in the grant to Chichester. The glebe now occupies 
162 acres, Cunningham measure. Beside the church stands a 
etone cross, more than six feet high, hewn out of a solid block, 
and ornamented with numerous scrolls and shamrocks. On 
each side of it is a square pillar, and on three of the sides of 
each of these pillars is engraved the figure of a human head ; 
on that pillar which is next the public road there is upon one 
side, besides the head, also the figure of a heart, and the heart 
is above the head. This cross and its accompaniments are con- 
sidered by antiquarians to have been erected in the eighth 
century. The other church founded by St. Patrick in 
Inishowen, was on the river Bredach, near Moville, and he 
called it Domnach-Bile. The monastery which was attached 
to this church became celebrated for its wealthy and history 

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KOKAItCHS OF CINSL-EOQHAK. £5 

makes mention of its abbots from 590 to 953. Among them 
was the celebrated St. Finian. In 812 this monasteiy waa 
surrounded hy a body of Danes, who landed from Lough Foyle, 
and by them set on fire, when all the Monks who were unable 
to save themselves by flight, perished in the flames. 

This place is now called " Oooley," which meant the " city," 
probably from a large number of persons having settled around 
the Yimous old pile, which appears to have been a very extensive 
edifice. For some time before the Protestant Keformation it 
Viras used as the parish church, and it so continued until destroyed 
during the Williamite wars of 1 688. In the adjoining cemetery 
is a very ancient tomb, said to be that of St. Finian, and out- 
side the walls is a very handsome stone cross, hewn out of one 
block, and in good preservation. The site of these ruins is a 
^ntle eminence near Lough Foyle, and in view of the ocean. 
The monastery of Moville was founded by St. Frigidian or 
Finian, in the reign of Dermod, monarch of Ireland. 

Having blessed Owen and his territory, the saint crossed the 
Foyle, and journeyed by Dunbo to Coleraine. 

Eoghan, or Owen, lived for 23 years after the departure of 
St. Patrick, and died in the year 465. The following is the 
account of his death as given in the Annals of the Four 
Ikcuters : — " Eoghan, son of Niall of the Nine Hostages, (from 
whom are descended the Cinel-Eoghan*) died of grief for 
Conall Gulbant, son of Niall of the Nine Hostages, and was 
buried at Uisce-Chain, (Iskaheen) in Inis-Eoghain, concerning 
which was said : — 

<• Eoghan, son of Niall, died 

Of tears — ^good his nature — 

In consequence of the death of Conall, of hard feats, 

So that his grave is at Uisce-Chain." 

Besides Aileach, Prince Owen seems to have sometimes resided 
in other districts of his territory : thus at Carthage, in the 
parish of Culdaff, is the fort of Doon-Owen, standing on the 

* Cinel-Eoghan, that is, the race or descendants of Eoghan. These 
were the O^Neills, M*Laughlins, O'Cathains (O'Kean), MacSuibnei 
(MacSwiny), O'Gormleaghads (Gormly), O'Heodhasas, O'Connallains, 
0*CTaoibhes,0*Madagains, O'Mulvihils, O'Horins, O'Donallys, 0*Cathm- 
haoils (Canlfield), MacQioUkellys, O'Hegartys, and the O'Dubhdiarmai 
(O'Dermotts). 

t From Conall Gnlban are descended the O'Donnells, O'Dohertys, 
O'Gallaghers, O'Boyles, and the O'Dalys.— JJfacG«oy/kfyfl»'< HUtorjf 
•f Irtlandt cap, 7, p. 119* 

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26 INISHOWEN. 



summit of a steep rock on the sea coast, said to have been his 
residence. 

After Owen's death his rale was perpetuated in the person 
of his son Coelbad. This prince devoted his talents to the ex- 
tension of religion and morality, and after his death his example 
was followed by his son Aidh. About this time Inishowen and 
the whole of Ireland enjoyed happiness and civilisation in a 
high degree. Donat, bishop of Fesula, wrote as follows re- 
garding this golden age in Ireland : — 

" Her frnitfiil soil for ever teems with wealth, 
With gems her waters, and her air with health ; 
Her waving furrows float with bearded corn, 
And arms and arts her envied sous adorn ; 
An island worthy of her pious race, 
In war triumphant, and unmatched in peace." 

On the death of Aidh the house of Owen was represented by 
his cousin, Murtagh Mac Earcha, grandson of Owen, who was 
elected to the mouarchy, and died in 533. This monarch was 
renowned in war ; he routed the enemy in seventeen battles ; 
he was no less remarkable for his piety, and for the protection 
which he extended to religion. His wife was named Sabina, 
and she, too, died with a high reputation for sanctity. Mur- 
tagh was the first monarch of Ireland of the race of Owen ; he 
met with a violent death. While stopping at one of his own 
manor houses, named Cleitagh, near the Boyne, on the night of 
the 1st of November, the house was set on fire by a wicked 
woman ; he, to escape the flames, leaped into a puncheon of 
wine, and was drowned. 

The next monarch of his race was Dermod, who ascended 
the throne in the year 544. In his reign St. Columbkille, of 
the royal race of Niall the Great, by Conal Gulban, prince of 
Tirconnell, founded more than one hundred churches and reli- 
gious houses ; among others, the abbey of Derry. As stated 
above, in this reign was founded the abbey of Moville, by St. 
Finian. Dermod distinguished himself as a legislator. He 
frequently assembled the states of the realm at Tara, and 
enacted, by their consent, several useful laws. He was very 
jealous of any infraction of the laws, and put his own son 
Broasal to death because he was guilty of a violation of them. 
Curnan MacHugh having killed a nobleman at the assembly at 
Tara, and having sought shelter from Feargus and Domhnall, 
the sons of Murfagh MacEarca, and from St. Columbkille, the 

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MONARCHS OF CINEL-EOQHAN. 27 

monardi, actuated by a sense of justice, had him arrested^and 
put to death. On another occasion, when St. Columbkille had 
eopied a portion of the sacred scriptures from a manuscript of 
St. Finian, and promulgated those writings without the owner^s 
consent ; and when St Finian complained of him for so doing, 
a.nd demanded the copy, the matter was referred to the arbitra- 
tion of the monarch, who decided that the copy thus made by 
Columbkille was the rightful property of St. Finian, or more 
strictly of St. Finian^s original. This celebrated decision of 
the monarch began thus : — " Le gach bom a boinin, ague le 
ga/ch leabhar a leabhran" which means, to every cow belongeth 
her calf, and to every book its copy. 

Columbkille was much incensed against the king, because of 
his arrest of the son of the king of Conuaught while under his 
protection ; and on account of his judgment in regard to the 
manuscript, he, therefore, determined to punish him. Going 
to his relatives in Tirconnell, he induced them to join him, 
■which they did, and, aided by the Connaughtmen, they gave 
battle to the monarch, at Cul-Dreimhne, in the county of 
Sligo, where the monarch's force of 2300 charioteers, cavalry, 
and foot-soldiers, were defeated with much slaughter. The 
saint and the monarch made peace after this battle, and the 
manuscript was given to Columbkille. It was preserved for 
centuries in the family of O'Donnell, and finally deposited in 
the museum of the Royal Irish Acadaiiiy, where it now is. 
But the saint's troubles were not at an end, for, being accessary 
to the bloodshed of the battle of Cul-Dreimhne, a canonical 
penance was imposed upon him ; he was obliged to leave Ire- 
land, which he did, with twelve of his disciples, and sailed for 
the Hebrides. He landed in the small island of lona, since 
called Icolmkille, from which he preached the Gospel to the 
Picts. 

Dermod reigned 20 years, and was slain in battle in the 
present county of Antrim. His body was buried at Connor, 
his head at Clonmacnoise. 

The sons of Murtagh MacEarcha succeeded Dermod in the 
monarchy, under the names of Fergus III. and Domhnall I.; 
in 565. They died after having reigned but one year, and 
were succeeded by Eocha XIII., son of Domhnall. . In 599 
the abbey of Fathan (Fahan) was founded by St. Murus, of 
the pace of Niall the Great. This monastery was highly 
venerated on account of its illustrious patron and founder, and 

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IKISHOWEK. 



likewise for the valuable records preserved in it for many 
centuries. Amongst others, a small volume written in Scotic 
verse by the saint,- and a large book of chronology filled with 
historical passages concerning the nation in general. This work 
was very highly *esteemed ; Colgan, the celebrated historian, 
says that there are still some fragments of it which have 
escaped the vandalism of latter days. 

The Four Masters give the following account of some of the 
abbots of Fahan : — " Ceallach, abbot of Othan-mor, died in the 
year 657 ; St. Cillene Ua Colla, abbot of Athain, died on 3rd 
January, 720 ; Robhartach, abbot of Athain-mor, died in 757 ; 
Ultan, abbot of Ohain-mor, died in 769 ; Aurthaile, abbot of 
Othain (Fahan), died in 788 ; Learghal, abbot of Othain, died 
in 850 ; Fearghal, abbot of Othain, died in 1070." Likewise, 
that, "in 716 three wonderful showers fell : a shower of silver 
in Othain-mor, a shower of honey in Othain-Beag,* and a 
shower of blood in Leinster." 

Hugh IV., brother of Eocha XIII., became monarch in 605. 
This prince was renowned for his justice and bravery, and died 
at Tara after a reign of seven years. In the reign of the 
monarch Finshneachta, which lasted fbr 20 years, and termi- 
nated in 693, the abbey of Both-Chonais was founded by St. 
Congellus. Much uncertainty existed as to what part this 
abbey stood in ; but Colgan, who knew it well, describes the 
place as "m regione de Inis-Eoguin prope Cvl-MaineJ^ "It is 
obviously," says O'Donovan, " the old graveyard, in the town- 
land of Binnion, parish of Clonmany." FeargaU, son of 
Maolduin, and great grandson of Hugh IV., became monarch 
in 709. He checked the incursions of the Britons, who made 
descents on the Irish coasts for the purpose of plunder. In 728, 
the sixth year of the monarch Flaghertach,^ a battle was fought 
at Magh-Itha, where numbers of the inhabitants of Inishowen 
.were slain. War and bitter feuds seem about this time to have 
been almost incessant. Not content with the mischief already 
done, Flaghertach sent to Scotland for a fleet of foreigners, who 
made no delay until they arrived in Inishowen. The monarch 
and his forces and mercenaries were opposed by the Cinel- 
Eoghan, UlidianS; and men of Keenaght, in the present county 

* Othain-Beag was probably in the same neighbourhood. — Dr, 
O^D(ynovan, 
t The monarch Flaghertach was not of the Cinel-Eoghan. 

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l?BRlOD oy THE DANES. 29 

of Deny ; but the mouarch was victorious, though many of the 
brave allies were drowned in the river Bann while on the re- 
treat. Hugh V. (Ollan), son of Feargall, was elected monarch 
in 734, and his brother, Niall Frassach, in 763. In his reign 
Ireland was the scene of frequent earthqual^es, which spread 
gloom and desolation throughout the land. He abdicated, and 
retired to a monastery in the island of Hy, where he spent the 
remainder of his days in mortification. Besides the earth- 
quakes which occurred in his reign, the Annals of Clonmacnoise 
state that a great famine prevailed at the beginning of it The 
king was deeply penitent on a<Jcount of the misery existing 
among his people, and, accompanied by seven bishops, be- 
sought God of his mercy to have compassion upon them. The 
request was no sooner made than throughout the districts of 
Aileach and Fahan (then called Muireadhach's territory) three 
showers fell — namely, a shower of pure silver, a shower of 
wheat, and a shower of honey, so that there was such 
abundance as was thought would be sufficient for a number ^f 
kingdoms. 

Chapter V. 
From Turgesius to De Ccmrcy^ 
Hugh VI., (Oirnigh) his son, became monarch in 797, and 
Yeigned 25 years. Early in this monarches reign the Danes 
made their first descent on Ireland, and inaugurated scenes of 
cruelty, terror, fire, and bloodshed, general depravity and cor- 
ruption of morals, ignorance and misery unparalleled, Niall 
Caille, son of Hugh VL, became monarch in S3 3, In his 
reign the Danes began to make regular settlements in the 
coimtry, and to construct their raths. The monarch, Niall 
Caille, gained a great victory over these invaders at Deny, and 
another at Tirconnell Berry. He was soon after accidentally 
drowned. This was the signal for the Danes to tear the 
sceptre from the ancient line, and to confer the monarchy upon 
Turgesius, one of their own body. Niall, thrown by his 
horse, was drowned in the river Callainn, county Kilkenny. 
In commemoration of his death was said : 

" A curse on thee, severe Callainn, 
Thou stream-like mist from a monntain, 
Thou bast painted death on every side, 
On the warlike bmnette-bright face of Niall.'* 

Annals of the Fow Matters- 

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30 IKISSOWEIf. 



Turgesius, the Norman, began his reign by changing the form 
of government. He placed a Danish king over each province, 
a captain in each territory, an abbot in each church, a sergeant 
in each village, and h« quartered a soldier in each house. For 
non-payment of the tax of an ounce of gold, which he imposed 
yearly on every house, the punishment was that the owner 
thereof should have hi» nose cut off — a penalty which was duly 
enforced, and which oo that account rendered thi» tax of 
^* avrgiod srone" or nose money, as memorable as it wa» odious 
and insulting. To perfect hi» sgrstem of enslaving tbe people^ 
and to banish every hope of their ever attaining liberty, he 
dosed up flfcll schools and colleges^ brnned the libiariear, and for- 
bade the instruction of yo«th in any science or in any military 
exercise. But the rule of the tyrant wa» destised to be of 
short duration. He wa» captured by Maelseachlainn, or 
Malachi, prince <rf Meath, and put to death. Keating say» 
that his capture was effected by strategy. Having demanded 
the daughter of Malachi, in order to insult her, her father gave 
seeming consent, and appwnted a day when she should meet 
the tyrant, accHnpanied by fifteen young maids as attendants. 
The appointed day arrived ; the profligate Turgesius was all 
expectation ; Meleha, the daughter of Malachi, and her train 
set out to meet him ; but the attendants proved to be athletic 
yoimg Irishmen, in female attire, and aimed with poinards, 
A great banquet was prepared ; the wine cup circulated 
freely ; ** aU went merry as a marriage bell/'^ till at length the 
concerted signal was given, upon which the brave youths, in 
less than a minute, bocind Turgesius to a post, and loaded him 
with irons. They were immediately joined by Malachi, at the 
head of a strong farce, who soon put the myrmidons of the 
tyrant to the sword, and seized and secured all the booty which 
the place contained. In a few days Turgesius was sunk to the 
bottom of Lough Owel, near MuUingai, by order of Malachi, 

Hugh VII., (Fionliat) son of Niall Caille, was elected 
monarch in 863, and reigned until 879. He attacked^ the 
Danes in Inishowen, and completely defeated them, chasing^ 
them to their ships, moored in Lough Foyle. He killed several 
thousands of their army, and had the heads of forty of their 
chiefs carried in triumph before him.* The next monarch of 

* '* A complete muster of the north was made by Aedh Finnlaith, so 
that he plundered the fortresses of the foreigners, wherever they were 
in the north, both in Cinel-Eoghain and Dalaraidhe ; and he carried 

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PERIOD OF THE DAKES. 31 

the race of Owen was Niall Glandubh, eon of Fionliat, who 
reigned from 916 to 919. The Danes again pillaged Inishowen, 
marking their course by fire and the sword. Daniel O'Niall, 
son of Murtagh, and grandson of Niall Glandubh, was monarch 
from 956 to 980, when he was succeeded by his son, Malachi 
II., in whose reign occurred the famous battle of Tara, where 
the Danes were defeated with great slaughter. From the fall 
of Turgesius, that is, during the reign of each of the preceding 
monarchs of the Cinel-Eoghan, and of that of every other who 
intervened between tjiem, down to the battle of Tara, under 
Malachi IL,or Maelseaohlainn, the Irish were almost incessantly 
at war with the Danes. But the victory of Tara was the most 
aignal which our brave countrymen obtained during that long 
course of years. For, not only were the invaders defeated, but 
every hostage and bondsman of Ireland obtained his liberty. 
** It was then," I quote from the Four Masters, " Maelseachlainn 
himself issued the famous proclamation, in which he said : — 
* Every one of the Gaeidhil, who is in the territory of the 
foreigners, in servitude and bondage, let him go to his own 
territory in peace and bappiness. This captivity was the 
Babylonian captivity of Ireland, until they were released by 
Maelseachlainn ; it was, indeed, next to the captivity of helL" 
Should not Inishowen be proud for having given birth to this 
great monarch. Again, in the sixteenth year of the reign of 
Malachi II., we find him engaged with the Danes of Dublin, 
at which time he carried off a golden torques and a sword, which 
was preserved as an heirloom by the descendants of Tomar, 
heir apparent of the Scandinavian throne. The circumstance 
is thus related in the Annals of the Four Masters : — " The ring 
of Tomar and the sword of Carlus were carried away by force 
by Maelseaehlainn,+ from the foreigners of Ath-Cliath." 

off their cattle and accoutrements, their goods and chattels. The 
foreigners of the province eame together at Loch-Feahhail. After Aedh, 
king of Ireland, had learned that this gath«ring of strangers was on 
the borders of his country, he was not negligent in attending to them, 
for he marched towards them with all his forces ; and a battle was 
fonght fiercely and spiritedly on both sides between them. The victory 
was gained over the foreigners, (Danes) and a slaughter was made of them. 
Their heads were collected to one place, in presence of the king ; and 
twelve score heads were reckoned before him, which was the number 
slain by him in that battle, besides the numbers of them who were 
wounded and carried off by him in the agonies of death, and who died 
of their wounds some time afterwards." — Four Masters^ A.D. 864. 
f Maelseachlainn, Malachi, and McLaughlin were the same name. 

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32 INISHOWEN. 



This entry was the subject which gave rise to Moore's 
famous ballad : — 

** Let Erin remember the days of old, 
Ere her faithless sons betrayed her, 
When Malachi wore the collar of gold, 
Which he won from the proud invader." 

In the year 999 we find Brian Boiroimbe, the son of Cein- 
neidigh, former ally of Malachi, turning, with a squadron of 
Connaughtmen, against him ; and three years after, namely, in 
1002, Brian usurped the monarchy, and^deposed his sovereign. 
Brian reigned for 12 years. At this period highways were 
formed, and bridges began to be built in Ireland, and the 
people began to take surnames. In his reign, too, as is well 
known, was fought the celebrated battle of Clontarf, on Good 
Friday, April a3d, 1014, where the Danes were signally de- 
feated, but Brian himself killed by the hand of a straggler. 
After the death of Brian, Malachi resumed the monarchy, and 
reigned nine years. Thirty days before his death he fought his 
last battle against the Danes. Concerning the death of Malachi 
the Four Masters say : — " Maelseachlainn Mor, son of Domh- 
nall, son of Donnchadh, pillar of the dignity and nobility of the 
west of the world, died on Cro-inis Locha-Aininn, after having 
been forty- three years in sovereignty over Ireland, according to 
the Book of Cluain-mic-Nois, which places the reign of Brian, 
son of Kennedy, in the enumeration, at the end of nine years, 
after the battle of Cluain-tarbh, in the seventy- third year of 
his age, on the fourth of the Nones of September, on Sunday 
precisely, after intense penance for his sins and transgressions, 
after receiving the body of Christ and his blood, after being 
anointed by the hands of Amhalghaidh, successor of Patrick, 
for he and the successor of Colum Cille, and the successor of 
Ciaran, and most of the seniors of Ireland, were present at his 
death, and they sung masses, hynms, psalms, and canticles, for 
the welfare of his soul." — (Vol. 11., p. 801, QDo^wvan'* 
Edition.) 

On the death of Malachi a terrible struggle commenced for 
the monarchy between the Hy Nialls, O'Briens, and O'Conors. 
Several stories are told regarding the warriors of Aileach at 
this stormy period ; among others I have heard different ver- 
sions of the history of CucuUin and his son, none of which, 
however, was so beautiful as the following, which was first 
published in the Lamp : — 

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PERIOD OF THE DANES. 33 

" At the time that Queen Reachtha lived, and in the reign 
of O'Connor, a young Ulster chief, named Cucullin, manifested 
a great desire to excel in arms, and for this purpose was sent 
to Scotland to study, under the direction of an Amazon, whose 
fame had extended over half the world. He remained there 
for some time, and soon became celebrated for his prowess in 
the field. His wild, daring spirit led him into many a quarrel, 
but his surpassing strength and skill invariably proved his 
safeguard. No one dared to meet him in single combat. The 
might of his arm crushed like a thunderbolt — the flash of his 
sword was as fierce as heaven's lightning. In chasing the red 
deer on the hill top his step was the lightest. He tried his 
voice against the howling storm — it was lost in his shout. 
The earth trembled beneath his tread — he was the mightiest of 
the mighty. He soon became a proficient in the art 
of love as well as of war. He won the affections 
of a " faire ladie," the daughter of a Scottish chief. 
Their life seemed bright as a sunbeam, and lasting as 
eternity. Alas for human happiness ! The leaves which now 
look green shall not be spared by the withering winds 
of autumn ere they part, and that for ever. Cucullin 
was recalled to his native land. The spell was broken. The 
trance had flown — eyes swam in the dew of the heart. The 
business which awaited him was imperative — delay was impos- 
sible. His father had fallen in war — ^the son must take his 
post. Dear as love is honour is ever dearer to the warrior, to 
all of true mould. He cannot love who wants honour, they 
are co-essential. Clouds darkened the brow of her who was 
lately the happiest of brides. She was inconsolable. A few 
short days more and CuculHn should be far away over the sea 
— ^far away to fight the angry battles of a barbarous time. 
She trembled for his fate ; his father had fallen, but, then, she 
felt confidence in the magic of his steel, in the prowess of his 
arm. While he roamed over the mountains she paced the 
watch-tower of her father's castle to catch the music-echo of 
his distant shout reverberating through the deep valleys, or the 
nodding of the tall proud plume which her own hands had 
formed for him. The hour of parting arrived. Cucullin re- 
quested his bride if a son were bom to train him up for the 
battle field ; to send him for iustruction to the Amazon, with 
whom he himself had made such proficiency, to make him a 
great warrior, so that if challenged, he should not bi:ook, though 

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34 IHISHOWEK. 

instant death were the consequence ; and if asked his name, he 
should regard it as an insult, and treat it accordingly. When 
thus fitted for the stem struggles of the time, he was to be sent 
to Ireland in search of his father. A gold chain was the token 
whereby he should be known, which was presented by Cucullin 
to his weeping bride at the moment of parting. She promised 
to obey all, and he departed to lead his troops to victory. It 
happened in due time that a son was bom, who was called 
Conloach, Years rolled on, and he grew up to boyhood. He 
was sent to the woman- warrior, who had trained his father, to 
prepare for the warfare of the future. His progress was rapid ; 
he was all that could be desired — ^brave, generous, and noble, 
and often as the fond mother gazed in ecstacy on his lovely face, 
she seemed to realise all the proud hopes and anticipations of the 
father. Meanwhile the latter was distinguishing himself in 
Ireland at the head of his troops, and as the echoes of his 
fame occasionaUy rbse above the storms of the period, Conloach 
yearned for the hour which should bear him to his wild embrace. 
At length the long-wished for hour was arrived, and the 
affectionate mother put the gold chain around his neck, the 
token whereby his father should recognise him. Landing in 
Ulster, he directed his steps to Elagh, where O'Connor kept his 
court. He was soon beneath the shadow of the old castle, and 
knocked loudly at the gate for admittance. An officer of the 
court demanded his name before he could enter. Conloach, true 
to the charge which he had received from childhood, r^sed 
to comply, regarded the question as an insult, and resolved to 
treat it accordingly, by challenging the officer, or any one in 
the court of O'Connor, to single combat. The officer remon- 
strated, but in vain. The fiery spirit of the young chief was 
at its height, and in its wayward promptings he defied the 
proudest warrior in Ulster to make him tell his name. 

The assembled courtiers heard the challenge, and soon 
hastened to the spot. Cucullin having never been beaten in 
single combat requested the king's permission to treat the 
haughty youth as he thought proper. The king acceded ; 
whereupon Cucullin demanded in peremptory terms the name 
of the young warrior, but without success. The victor of a 
hundred fights could not brook such indifference, and forthwith 
drew his brand with all the confidence of easy triumph. Con- 
loach was before him with noble manly front, sword in hand, 
ready for the struggle. They fought. Victory forga long time 

,edbyC:iOOQie 



PERIOD OF THE DANES. 35 

seemed doubtful. Both were equally expert with their weapons, 
liaving been trained by the same person. At length Cucullin 
^was yielding before the indomitable vigour of the young chief. 
He grew enraged at the idea of being beaten by a stripling, 
retreated to a short distance and seized his servant's spear which 
^'was lying beside him on the ground. /Twas his last resource, 
"but his aim was unerring. He hurled it with his usual dexterity, 
ai\d pierced the body of Conloach. The young chief fell a 
corpse at the warrior's feet. It was a sad sight — ^the father and 
the son. 

" The conqueror bent over the fallen foe with reverence for 
the brave youth, and discovered beneath the folds of his gar- 
ment a beautiful gold chain. 'Twas the same he had given to 
Lis young bride in Scotland when returning to his own country. 
Then, and not till then, did he know that he had slain his own 
brave son. The honours of victory were soon changed into the 
wailings of disaster. Gloom was on every face. The fallen 
chief was consigned to his early grave ; fair maidens decked 
it with fresh flowers of spring, and brave men knelt there as 
though it were the shrine of the Battle Grod, 

" Some months after the occurrence of this sad tragedy a 
wild November storm was howling fearfully, when a muffled 
figure was observed gazing wistfully on the grave of the young 
chief, down in the green valley beneath the castle — the very 
spot where his life-blood once reddened the earth. The night 
passed away in fearful storms, and the next morning the figure 
was at the grave-side still. Cucullin, with some others, went 
down to see who it was, and there they found the dead body of 
her who was once the fair young Scottish bride — the mother of 
Conloach. She was buried by the side of her brave son, and 
Cucullin soon followed them to a sorrowful grave." 

Murtagh O'Brien, great grandson of Brien Boiroimhe, became 
monarch in 1089, his rival being Domnald Maglochluin, Prinoe 
of Inishowen. . Hither O'Brien marched, marking his course 
with fire and sword, overcame Maglochluin, demolished the 
ancient castle of Aileach, and xjarried some of the stones thereof 
into Munster, as a trophy of his success in the North. At the 
death of O'Brien, Maglochluin became monarch, and next year 
died in the Abbey of Derry. 

The demolition of Aileach, by O'Brien, was in revenge of 
Kincora, which Mac Laughlin razed and demolished some time 
previous. " Muircheartach commanded his army to carry with 

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36 iNisaoWfiiT. 

them, from* Oileach to Luimneach, a stone of the demolished 
building for every sack of provisions which they had. In oom^ 
memoration of which was said : — 

* I neyer heard of the billeting of grit stones, 
Thongh I heard of the billeting of companies. 
Until the stones of Oileach were billeted 
On the horses of the King of the West.' ** 

Four Masters. 

Aileach was demolished by O'Brien in 1102, who, at the same 
time burned many churches and forts about Fahan, and about 
Ardstraw, and plundered Inishowen generally* 

Murtagh Mac Laughlin, son of Domnald, was Monarch after 
his rival O'Conor. Murtagh was a warrior and a politician^ 
and he brought the provinces much into subjection ; but he 
was the last monarch of the house of Inishowen* With him 
ended the supreme dignity of his illustrious race — a race, to 
whose immortal renown, saw their ruling princes in succession, 
though not consecutively, Monarchs of Ireland from the sixth 
to the middle of the twelfth century* Murtagh may be con- 
sideted as the most powerful monarch since the reign of his 
illustrious relative, Malachi II. Writelrs have remarked 4ihat 
it would have been fortunate for Ireland had Murtagh enacted 
a law in favour of securing the succession of his house to the 
crown, which would have put an end to the factions caused by 
the usurpation of the provincial kings, that hastened the downfall 
of the nation. In his reign the great church of Deny, which 
was eighty feet long, was erected by Flaithbheartach Ua Brol- 
chain, (Bradley) successor of Columkille, and the clei^, and 
by the assistance of the king, and they completed its erection 
in the space of forty days, as related in the Annals of the Four 
Masters, A,T>, 1164. While Murtagh was making his tour of 
the provinces, a most rem^kable incident occurred at Corofin, 
in the present County of Clare. It was the finding, as related 
by the Four Masters, of " the head of Eochaidh, son of Luchta ; 
it was larger than a great cauldron ; the largest goose would 
pass through the hole of his eye, and through the hole of the 
spinal marrow." The celebrated Dearvforgaill, wife of O'Euairc, 
Prince of Brefny, was the daughter of Murtagh Ua Macleach- 
lainn, or Maelseachlainn. 

After its demolition by O'Brien, Aileach was never re-edified, 
but another castle, in more modern style, was erected there by 
one of the O'Dohertys, as is supposed, in the 16th century. 

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THE ENGLISH INVASION. 37 

This was occupied by O'Neills, O'Donnells, and O'Dohertys, 
successively, as either of these parties happened to be in the 
ascendant. It is now as quiet, as silent, and as deserted as the 
graves of most of the chiefs and warriors who contended for it, 
or who held princely sway within its walls for upwards of two 
thousand five hundred years. The owl, the crow, and the bat 
are its only denizens ; they alone seem to keep vigil over tiie 
host of entranced soldiery who are said to lie - dormant in its 
vaults, under the command of Dharra Dheerlig. It is said that 
at one time a man who was strolling about Elagh saw the end 
of a sword protruding from the ground, and, on pulling it up, 
forthwith the place opened, and the giants started up from their 
sleep, armed with spears, and shouting, " Is the time come ?" 
The frightened wanderer replied " No," and they went to sleep 
again, and the earth closed round them as before. Whenever 
that sword is drawn, the sleeping warriors of Inishowen will be 
at their posts to know if the time is come. Contiguous to 
Elagh Castle is the little valley where Queen Eeachtha ran a 
race against the fleetest horses in the stables of the monarch 
O'Connor. She left them far behind, save one, named Fairy ^ 
the king's favourite ; but Reachtha was first at the winning 
post, and was immediately delivered of " two tmns" She 
suffered much, and was greatly displeased at the men of Ulster 
for urging her to run the race, and, having cursed them, it is 
said they suffered the same pains as herself for a long time 
afterwards. 



Chapter VI, 

The Erigliah Conquest 

As our last chapter began with the incursions and depreda- 
tions of the Danes, so the present one begins with that long 
series of internecine strife, commonly called the English Con- 
quest. A cursory perusal of the history of this period will 
suffice to show, that while their opponents ever acted on the 
principle of divide and conqtier, the Irish seem to have been 
unconscious that " Union is strength." 

In 1177 the English, led on by De Courcy, attacked Ulster, 
and were completely defeated by Murtagh O'Carril and Frederick, 
Prince of Ulidia. After the death of Murtagh Maglochluin, 
the next prince of Inishowen was Flahertach O'MapIduin. In 

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38 INISHOWEN. 



1188 the authorities of the Pale prepared an expedition against 
Ulster, which Flahertach caused them to abandon. In 1196 
he killed Bussell, a follower of De Gourcy, who had pillaged 
Tirconnell, and the same year he himself died. O'Maolduin 
was succeeded by O'Dougherty, a descendant of the monarch 
Niall the Great by his son Conal Gulban. O'Dougherty was, 
therefore, a younger branch of the O'Donnells.* This prince 
did not long enjoy his new dignity, but fell in the battle-field, 
fighting in the cause of his country against De Courcy. His 
memory, however, is still perpetuated, for it is from him that 
the O'Doughertys of Inishowen take their name. De Courcy 
was, for a while, superseded by De Lacy, but, being pardon^ 
again, set sail for Ireland, and was fifteen times repulsed by 
contrary winds. He was at length driven on the coast of France, 
where he died. He had a son, who was afterwards created 
Baron Kinsale. After the death of the first CDougherty the 
miseries of Inishowen were multiplied. In 1518 it was at- 
tacked by Arthur O'Neill, Prince of Tyrone, in consequence of 
differences which arose between him and Connor Carragh 
O'Doherty, whereupon O'Neill marched hither, destroying all 
in his way Ijy fire and sword, notwithstanding the best exertions 
of O'Dogherty to defend the place. It next appears to have 
passed into the possession of O'Donnell, Prince of Tirconnell, 
for CNeiU having claimed the right of lord over O'Donnell, 
the case was referred to the arbitration of the English Deputy, 
who decided that O'Donnell was free from all dependence on 
O'Neill, except a yearly tribute of 60 oxen for Inishowen. It 
was probably about this time that O'Neill sent his behest to 

O'Donnell, saying, " Send me tribute, or else ;" when the 

latter as laconically replied, " I owe you none, and if J* 

In 1555 Calvagh O'Donnell defeated Phelim O'Doherty, and 
wrested from him the castle of Elagh. In 1573, and likewise 
1576, the Earl of Essex made two unsuccessful attempts upon 
Ulster. Next, in 1587, followed the capture of Young Hugh 

* Ua Domhnaill, now anglice O'Donnell. This family, who, after 
the English Invasion, hecame supreme Princes or Kings of Tirconnell, 
had heen previously Chiefs of the cantred of Ginel-Lnighdheach, of 
which Kilmacrenan was the. principal chnrch and residence. They 
derive their hereditary pnmame from Bomhnall, son of Eigneachan, 
the son of Dalach, son of Mnircheartach, son of Ceannfaeladh, son of 
Garhh, son of Eonan, son of Lughaidh, son of Sedna, son of Fergus 
Ceannfoda, son of Gonall Gulban, son of Kiall of the Kine Hostages, 
Monarch of Ireland in the fifth century. — Dr. O'Donovan, 



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THE ENGLISH INVASION. 39 

O'Donnell, Prince of Tirconnell, by decoying him on board a 
ship in Lough Swilly. After he effected his escape we find 
Iiini allied with the chiefs of Tirconnell and Inishowen against 
the English, whom he fought at Enniskillen and elsewhere. In 
1599 Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex, came^to Ireland as lord 
deputy. He received instructions to blockade the Earl of 
Tyrone by garrisoning the forts of Lough Foyle and Ballyshan- 
non. The plan was abandoned by Essex, but accomplished by 
Lord Mountjoy, who became deputy next year, and who sent 
into Lough Foyle a fleet of 67 ships, containing 5,000 infantry 
and 300 horse, under the command of Sir Henry Dockwra. 
Dockwra erected four fortresses on the Inishowen coast of the 
lough, from which he ransacked the country, despite the exer- 
tions of John O'Doherty. Greencastle, built by The O'Doherty 
in the fifteenth century, was abandoned at this juncture, and 
taken possession of by Dockwra. It is now a magnificent ruin, 
and stands on a boldly prominent rock near the entrance to the 
lough, and, from the great strength and extent of the building, 
which covers a surface of 100 yards long and 56 yards broad, 
flanked by octagonal and square towers, inaccessible towards 
the sea, and strongly fortified towards the land, would seem 
almost impregnable. The walls are in some places 12 feet 
thick, and many of them are still in a good state of preservation. 
It was afterwards granted to Chichester. I may also add that 
near this place are other extensive ruins called Capel Moule, 
having the appearance of a military edifice, and supposed to 
have formerly belonged to the Knights Templars ; and on a 
detached rock about a mile distant are the ruins of Kilblaney 
Church. Previously to 1620 Kilblaney formed a separate 
parish. 

Hugh O'Donnell hearing of the harsh treatment of the 
people of Inishowen by the garrison of Lough Foyle, came to 
oppose them, and killed a great many. Hither, also, came 
O'Neill, and surroimded the forts, and in August killed 1500 
who were foraging in the country ; but such losses were soon 
repaired by the fleet, which kept constantly transporting troops 
from England. Dockwra having advanced to Derry, was 
hemmed in by O'Donnell, and in the fury of combat was 
wounded by the blow of a pike, dealt him by O'Donnell, which 
cut through his helmet. The O'Donnell next repaired to 
Munster to oppose Carew, and left the defence of this district 
in the hands of John O'Doherty, Niall Garve O'DonnelJ, and 

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40 iiriSHOWBN. 



Daniel Gallagher ; but just then a section of the chiefs proved 
faithless to their own cause, and paved the way for the success 
of the English. Arthur O'Neill, following the policy of his 
father, left the Irish party, and declared for the English. So 
did Niall Garve O'Donnell. Young Hugh O'Donnell, hearing 
of his kinsman's revolt, hastened back from Munster, and posted 
his army near Lifford, and from here he fought, with much 
success, the garrisons of Derry and Lifford, and Niall Garve 
and his adherents. In one of these engagements O'Doherty 
fell, which\was as the loss of his right hand to O'Donnell, and 
the occasion of much discord in Inishowen generally. A» 
O'Doherty had left but an infant son, O'Donnell, according to 
the ancient oustom, created his nearest relative, Felim O'Doherty, 
Prince of Inishowen. This legitimate act so far offendtd the 
people that many of them became the open foes of O'Donnell, 
and surrendered the principal strongholds to Dockwra and Niall 
Garve. 

All O'Donneirs efforts against the malcontents of Inishowen 
were of no avail either in reducing them to submission or in 
preventing them from voluntarily and unconditionally subject- 
ing themselves to the English yoke. They flocked around 
Niall Garve at Binion, in Clonmany, and here 0'Donnell 
besieged them. Hard pressed, Niall withdrew eastward along 
the shore, and came to a stand on the sand plain of Pollin. 
Here they fought. The battle was bloody ; the loss terrible. 
Victory was long undecided. The O'Kanes, of County Derry, 
on the side of O'Donnell, were as lions. The Connaughtmen 
on the same side reeled ; this contingent was rather inactive 
and inexperienced, and O'Donnell was obliged to abandon the 
undertaking. Niall Garve and his myrmidons were masters 
of the field. A little mount in the vicinity, to which some of 
the wounded O'Kanes retired, is still known by the name of 
Ardne-Gahan. This battle was fought in the year 1600. The 
sands here are sometimes blown about by the wind, and 
quantities of human bones, and sabres, buckles, rings, sword 
belts and pikes exposed. I have, myself, seen human benes 
among the sand knolls at this place. 

Niall Garve was now granted the principality of Tirconnell 
by the English authorities, and was henceforth known as the 
Queen's O'Donnell. He next marched to Donegal, expelled 
the friars of the Franciscan Convent, and made it an arsenal ; 
liut th« building soon after taking fire, he lost 1,000 men, with 

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THE ENGLISH INVASION. ^ 41 

bis brother Conn, all of whom perished in the flames. He then 
returned to Inishowen, which, with Dockwra's assistance, he 
sacked and plundered. After the flight of the northern chiefs 
in the reign of James, six counties, comprising their estates, as 
is well known, were confiscated to the crown, but Inishowen 
does not seem to have come immediately under the operation of 
that scheme. In 1608, however, its chief, Cahir O'Doherty, 
(he has been called Sir^ but it is highly improbable that he was 
so styled while alive. The ancient Irish used no titles ; they 
were addressed simply by name, to which, in the time of Brian 
Boiroimhe, a surname was added, generally the name of the 
father or gi-andfather, with Mac orO prefixed) rose up inarms 
against the harsh and overbearing conduct of James, Cahir, 
then only 20 years of age, was the most powerful in the north 
after the departure of O'Neill, O'Donnell, and Maguire. He 
attacked the garrison of Derry by night, which he put to the 
sword, with the commander Palet, and, having set the Catholics, 
who were imprisoned, at liberty, it is said he put the city on 
fire, and reduced it to ashes. This uprising is said to have been 
provoked by Palet, the successor of Governor Dockwra, by his 
attempting to horsewhip Cahir when he complained to him of 
the offensive conduct of some of his followers. Cahir next took 
the castle of Culmore, in which he found twelve pieces of can- 
non ; he garrisoned Culmore, and gave the command to 
M*Davet, after which he scoured the country with surprising 
success. In a few weeks Field Marshal Winkel appeared be- 
fore Culmore, with 4,000 men, and M*Davet, seeing that Cahir 
could not arrive in time to assist him, threw some of the can- 
non into the sea, put the rest, with all his stores, on board two 
transports, set fire to Culmore, and sailed to Derry. Winkel 
then mardied against the castle of Beart, in which was the wife 
of O'Doherty, Mary Preston, daughter of Viscount Gormans- 
ton, whom he sent home to her brother, probably because he 
was a supporter of English interests. The monk in command 
of the castle capitulated with Winkel, on condition of the garri- 
son being spared, and suffered to retire ; but this was not after- 
wards carried out, for all who could not purchase liberty wer« 
put to death. 

As soon as Winkel got possession of the castle of Beart, he 
made repeated sallies through the different parts of Inishowen, 
spreading fire and desolation in his track. O'Doherty, hear- 
ing of what was going on in his absence, hastened back with 

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42 INISHOWBN. 



his little army of 1500 fierce and resolute spirits, and fought 
repeated battles with the English, under Winkel, but, being 
of an impulsive, fiery disposition, he soon lost his life and the 
victory. On the 18th of July, 1608, Cahir Roe O'Doherty, 
shot through the head, fell in defence of the interests of his 
country and the freedom of his faith, in the sixth month of his 
campaign, and in the twenty-first year of his life. Seldom haa 
the grave closed around a more chivalrous, daring, or valiant 
chieftain. His ^ patrimony was immediately put under the 
operation of the plantation measures, and its broad acres trans- 
ferred to new proprietors, and with them the last remnant of 
Ireland became indissolubly connected with the English Crown. 

At the fall of O^Doherty the whole of Inishowen, except 
what was reserved for the Bishops of the Established Church, 
was conferred by the Crown on Sir Arthur Chichester, of Bel- 
fast, who was the ancestor of the present Marquis of Donegal. 
Chichester leased most of these lands to middlemen ; the Done- 
gal family have followed the same practice ; so much so, that it 
is at present almost wholly in the hands of middlemen, who have 
it snb-let to the people. The income of these middlemen varies 
from X3,000 to ^100 each. Some few hold as peasant 
proprietors under Lord Donegal. Lord Donegal reserves the 
royalties, and is often a check on the middlemen in the case of 
fuel and game. Among the early settlers are the Harts and 
Careys. Most of them have disappeared, except one or two 
families. Property has often changed hands, and has frequently 
fallen into the hands of successful Deny merchants. 

There are various accounts of the place of Cahir O'Doherty^s 
death. The Annals of the Four Masters say he fell between 
Derry and Culmore ; that his body was cut into quarters, and 
his head sent to Dublin by the English. This I regard as the 
true account of it ; but I append that of the Rev. Caesar Otway, 
which, though highly improbable, is related traditionally by 
many, especially in Tirconnell. The improbability of its correct- 
ness will be apparent, when we recollect that his rebellion oc- 
curred in the year 1608 ; that it lasted for six months, and 
that, consequently, his death could not have occurred on Holy 
Thursday, as related by him in Sketches in Ireland^ as follows : — 

" The Plantation of Ulster had not as yet taken place, but 
already many Scots had settled themselves along the rich 
alluvial lands that border the Loughs Foyle and Swilly ; and it 
was Sir Cahir's most desired end and aim to extirpate these ixb 



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THE ENGLISH INTASION. 43 

tmders, hateful as strangers, detestable as heretics. He was 
the Scotsman's curse and scourge. One of these industrious 
Scots had settled in th© valley of the Lennan. Eory O'Donnell, 
the Queen's Earl of Tirconnell, had given him part of that 
fertile valley, and he there built his bawn. But Sir Cahir, in 
the midst of the night, and in Sandy Bamsey's absence, attacked 
his enclosure, drove off his cattle, slaughtered his wife and 
children, and left his pleasant homestead a heap of smoking 
ruins. The Scot, on his return home, saw himself bereaved, 
left desolate in a foreign land, without property, kindred, or 
home ; nothing but his true gun and dirk. He knew that five 
hundred marks were the reward offered by the Lord Deputy for 
Sir Cahir's head. He knew that this outlaw was the foe who 
had quenched the fire on his hearth, with the blood of his wife 
and little ones ; and with a heart maddened by revenge, with 
hope resting on the promised reward, he retired to the wooded 
hills that run parallel to the Hill of Doune ; there, under cover 
of a rock, his gun rested on the withered branch of a stunted 
oak, he waited day by day, with all the patience and expectancy 
of a tiger in his lair. Sir Cahir was a man to be marked in a 
thousand ; he was the loftiest and proudest in his bearing of 
any man in the province of Ulster ; his Spanish hat with the 
heron's plume was too often the terror of his enemies, the 
rallying point of his friends, not to bespeak the O'Doherty ; 
even the high breastwork of loose stones, added to the natural 
defences of the rock, could not hide the chieftain from observa- 
tion. On Holy Thursday, as he rested on the eastern face of 
the rock, looking towards the Abbey of Kilmacrenan, expecting 
a venerable friar to come frofu this favoured foimdation of 
St. Columbkill to shrive him and celebrate Mass ; and as he was 
chatting to his men beside him, the Scotsman applied the fire 
to his levelled matchlock, and before the report began to roll its 
echoes through the woods and hills, the ball had passed through 
Sir Cahir's forehead, and he lay lifeless on the ramparts. His 
followers were panic-struck ; they thought that the rising of 
the Scotch and English was upon them, and deserting the life- 
less body of their leader, they dispersed through the mountains. 
In the meantime, the Scotchman approached the rock ; he saw 
his foe fall ; he saw his followers flee. He soon severed the 
head from the body, and wrapping it in his plaid, off he set in 
the direction of Dublin. He travelled all that day, and at 
night took shelter in a cabin belonging to one Terence Gallagher, 

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44 IKlSHOWiK, 



situated at one of the fords of the river Finn. Here Eamsey 
sought a night's lodging, which Irishmen never refuse ; and 
partaking of an oaten cake and some sweet milk, he went to 
rest with Sir Cahir's head under his own as a pillow. The 
Scotchman slept sound, and Terence was up at break of day. 
He saw blood oozing out through the plaid that served as his 
guest's pillow, and suspected all was not right ; so, slitting the 
tartan plaid, he saw the hair and head of a man. Slowly 
drawing it out, he recognised features well known to every man 
in Tirconnell ; they were Sir Cahir's. Terence knew as well 
as any man that there was a price set on this very head — a 
price abundant to make his fortune — a price he was now re- 
solved to try and gain. So off Terence started, and broad 
Tyrone was almost crossed by CGallagher before the Scotch- 
man awoke to resume his journey. The story is still told with 
triumph through the country, how the Irishman, without the 
treason, reaped the reward of Sir Cahir's death." 

The Established Church was next introduced, which took 
from the Catholics their ecclesiastical property, and deprived 
them of their places of worship, and inaugurated that spirit of 
religious ascendancy which wise statesmen have so oft con- 
demned. The people were now in a miserable plight : their 
property confiscated, their religion proscribed, and themselves 
the victims of penal laws and religious persecution, but, amidst 
all, clinging with admirable and unswerving fidelity to the faith 
of their fathers, which to-day is numerically stronger than its 
favoured rival. Truly, then, has it been observed by a noble- 
man that persecutions '^ cannot destroy religions, nor endow- 
ments sustain them." 

Agrarian outrages, consequent on rack-renting and evictions ; 
turbulence and resistance to the collection of tithes, until these 
were finally converted into rent-charge ; the institution of the 
Excise laws under Cromwell, and the smuggling and illicit dis- 
tillation which those laws have given rise to ; periodical famines 
and continued emigration have been the leading characteristics 
in the history of this district since the reign of James I., when 
it became subject to British sway. 



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TENANT-BIGHT. 45 



Chapter VIL 
Tenant-Right. 

The rapid and coustant emigration which has decimated the 
Irish population has proved a marvel to statesmen and political 
economists for many generations. But it would appear that 
such investigators after truth must have reasoned from wrong 
principles, or hava been imperfectly acquainted with the country 
and its people, else they could surely have discovered the cause 
why myriads of the bone and sinew of Ireland yearly quit her 
soil, the homes of their affections, the scenes of their early 
youth, the old roof trees under which they were reared, their 
trusted companions and weeping relatives ; why stalwart sons 
must bid adieu, a final and everlasting adieu, to their aged and 
tottering sires — mothers, with the anguish which mothers only 
know, relinquish their daughters — husbands, in the frenzy of 
despair, tear themselves from their destitute wives and helpless 
little children — all, all impelled by ungovernable necessity to 
seek to Tjetter their unhappy condition beyond the western 
main, or perish in the attempt — to seek on a foreign and distant 
shore, amid the vicissitudes of climes and seasons, the furnace 
heat of sunmier and the blood-congealing blasts of winter — ^to 
seek there the meaos of subsistence and comfort, and beneath 
an alien but friendly Government, to find that security for their 
property which is denied them at home. The cause of all this 
misery is palpably plain, though many pretend not to see it. 
Ireland is an agricultural country. The few who own the soil 
till it not, and the millions who till the soil own it not ; and 
while tillage and occupation impart increased value to the land, 
landlord-made law steps in and says to the tenant — '^ I disown 
your improvements, or I leave the landlord to appropriate them 
to himself, to rent you for them, and tax you for your own 
industry ; you are his serf, his engine, his machine ; the trust 
which the legislature confers on you is practically his ; vote for 
his nominee or incur his mightinesses vengeful wrath ; you are 
wholly and completely in his power, and he may evict and ex- 
terminate you without let or hindrance." But, in treating of 
the relations which should exist between landlord and tenant in 
Ireland, I wish at the very outset not to be understood as 
advocating socialism ; for to all ideas of the sort I am most 
unequivocally opposed, God forbid I should be found on the 

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46 lyiSHOWEN. 



side of socialism, or to advocate the doctrines of Rousseau, nor 
those of Diderot or D'Alembert, as circulated through the 
medium of the iufidel Encyclopaedia, and which led to the 
horrors of the revolution. It must be remembered, however, 
that revolutions, which disorganize society, obliterate titles, and 
destroy the rights of property, as the whirlwind scatters the 
faded leaves of autumn, are never the offspring of -momentary 
impulse, nor are they produced, nor never could be produced, 
by a band of disaffected agitators, however influential, or how- 
ever well inclined to disturb society. No, these fearful 
eruptions are caused by long festering sores in the body politic 
itself, the effect of centuries of misrule, and the exercise of 
arbitrary and despotic power ; and their regular recurrence 
may be looked for and expected where such exist, and can only 
be averted by wise, salutary, and equitable laws, made and 
enacted in proper time. It is to this, then, I earnestly desire 
to direct attention. 

It should be borne in mind that the title-deeds of many of 
our landed proprietors do not extend beyond the period of the 
Revolution of 1688. Most of them, particularly the head 
landlords, hold by grants from the Crown, and in the north many 
derive their grants from the confiscation of Ulster. What their 
ancestors were, whether peers, pipers, or pedlars, I care not to 
inquire. I regard their titles, conferred by the law of the 
land, as good enough, and therefore I would be unwilling to 
disturb them. Even the class of middlemen, that virulent ex- 
crescence which has grown on the system through the necessi- 
ties of needy, gambling, spendthrift absentees, I care not to 
abolish. But this conceded, after all our landed proprietors are 
but the stewards, the very creatures of the State. From it they 
derive their all. It was it, at first, which gave them their pro- 
perties ; it was it which buttressed and upheld them therein, 
and conferred powers upon them over the population scarcely 
inferior to those of the Sovereign. Now, as this is so, why do 
we hear a howl raised in Parliament regarding an invasion of 
the rights of property, when a measure for the equitable ad- 
justment of the relations between landlord and tenant is brought 
forward by a minister of the Crown? -Can that authority 
which gave, not improve, alter, and modify power ? Can it not 
even cancel the gift, and resume the ownership? If the 
Sovereign permit the banishment of her people, will she not 
have to account for it ? Is the strength of the King not in the 

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TENANT-RIGHT. 47 



number of his subjects, and has not the King of Kings made 
the earth for the use and support of the whole human race ? 

The peasantry of Ireland are for th« most part descended from 
the old Celtic inhabitants of the coimtry. They hold by right of 
occupancy from time immemorial. Their settlement on the 
soil dates from a period long before the days of Strongbow, nay, 
even before the introduction of Christianity itself. Now, I 
believe this title-deed of occupancy is as good as any title which 
the Crown can confer, and should shield the inhabitants of the 
country from the irresponsible exterminator ; should warrant 
the law to secure them the full value of the improvements 
which their labour or capital, or both, have conferred upon the 
soil. But this seems to have been lost sight of both by our 
parliamentary representatives and the various wiiters who have 
treated the subject. They reason as if the landlord alone had 
exclusive right in the soil, in its state or condition, and iu 
everything thereon. The signs of the times, as well as the in- 
creasing intelligence of the working classes, clearly indicate the 
desirability of settling this vexed question. How, then, is it to 
be done ? The answer is, simply by legalising tenant-right. 

Let us look back and see in what state did the old proprietors 
receive the land from the Crown. We will find that, if culti- 
vated at all, or to whatever extent improved, the improvement 
and cultivation were effected by the occupiera But much of 
it, and of what is now bearing rich harvests of grain, was in a 
state of nature, overgrown with heath and rushes, and tenanted 
by the wild-duck, snipe, crane, or curlew. 

Did the Crown confer upon those proprietors the right of 
exterminating the people? It did not. What right did it 
give them ? The right of receiving the rents only. Did it 
grant to them the right of appropriating the tenants' improve- 
ments ? No. If the land had remained in the condition in 
which it was given, in what state would the country be in 
now ? Was it the landlords who made our valleys smile with 
plenty and teem with fertility ? Certainly not ; it was the 
peasantry. Was it the landlords who dislodged the rocks of 
granite and of whinstone, drained the springs, and caused the 
ploughshare to ascend to the mountain tope. Certainly not ; 
it was the people. And after all this — after clearance, drainage, 
fencing, building, have been effected by the people, what 
deprives them of a legal right to be recompensed for their 
toils ? Landlord legislation. What has crowded the emigrant^ 

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48 INISHOWEK. 



Bhip, and forced the Irish into involuntary exile 1 The same. 
What crammed the Workhouses of the South and West, and 
filled their graveyards with heaps of deaxi ? The same. What 
banded together in lawless confederacies the Rockites and Peep- 
o-day Boys, the ruthless Molly Maguires, and the cruel, cow- 
ardly, immoral, and demoralised ribbon hordes ? The merciless 
tyranny of the middlemen, and the injustice which .arose frono. 
the operation of laws which ignore the people and give all to 
the landlords. 

It has been asserted that tenant-right is landlord wrong ; 
but this is a complete mistake, for nowhere are the landlords 
better repaid, nor the tenants more thriving, peaceful, orderly, 
and industrious than on such estates as this principle is con- 
ceded by the justice and wisdom of the proprietors. And of 
these instances are not few, particularly in the north. Grentle- 
men of this class, then, can in no wise be affected by the 
passing of a law making it imperative on all to do what they 
of their own free will already practice. At all events the 
matter comes simply to this, the landlords hold from the Crown ; 
the tenants belong to the soil, which they hold by right of 
occupancy, and, besides, they have made the improvements ; 
consequently, they should not be exterminated, 

What is to be done ? If it were practicable I would like to 
see a peasant proprietary, as in Sweden and Norway, where 
each man holds his farm in fee-simple. This, perhaps, would 
not be quite possible with us, yet the obstacles are not quite 
insuperable ; and, by giving legal facilities for its adoption, for 
the purchase in perpetuity of the landlords' claims, even- at a 
rate to ensure him from all loss, the practice could be established 
to a very considerable degree. 

In the absence, however, of this, the law should give to _ 
every tenant the right of selling his property, that is, his 
interest in the soil, whenever he pleases, and to the highest 
bidder, just as he would any other commodity, provided the 
purchaser be a person of good character and solvent. If this 
were so, and sooner or later it shall be, the occupier woidd not 
be indifferent as to the improvement of his holding, nor afraid 
of being deprived of the good results of his industry ; and he 
would regard money invested in the land as good and better 
than in the bank or funds. The produce of the whole country 
would soon be increased, and consequently its wealth. Agrarian 
outrages, too, would cease, and the spirit which manifests itself 

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TENANT-EIQHT. 4& 



iu periodical outbursts, which aim at overturning the Throne 
and Constitution, would be laid for ever. The Whiteboy and 
the Fenian would be unknown, and instead of that«tide of 
emigration, which yearly carries away the bone and sinew of 
the land, with hearts rankling with hatred for the very name of 
England, our people would stay at home to improve the great 
natural resources of the country, and Ireland would become at 
once the strength and bulwark of the empire. 

But it may be asked — "As the practice of tenant-right 
prevails in the North, why do the people emigrate thence, or 
why do you complain, as you already enjoy all you profess to 
ask from the law ?" This brings us back to what we have 
before stated ; we might reply by asking why do those landlords 
oppose the passing of a measure which, if law, could not affect 
them who already concede what is required ? The real answer, 
however, is, that tenant-right, as it exists in the north, is 
entirely dependent on the landlord's will, and has nothing per- 
manent or secure about it. What the present proprietor does 
in that regard his successor may undo. A father, therefore, 
will not enter upon a course of real improvement of lands from 
which his children may be expelled, unless he is an adventurer 
or a fool. Instances are not rare of rents having been increased 
within a few years after the improvement of farms, and honest 
industrious tenants thus made pay for their own work, in con- 
sequence of the landlord's death, or of the passing of his 
property into other hands — into those of "a king who knew 
not Joseph." Emigration, then, proceeds from this insecurity. 

Many landlords, again, will not permit the out-going tenant 
to sell, but will allow him X5 to the pound rent, on the plea 
that if they allowed a fine to be paid, the incoming tenant 
would be impoverished. We believe that this, too, is a fallacy, 
for the simple reason that in a well regulated estate, and under 
a good landlord, few farms change hands. In the next place, 
it is one of the most powerfid barriers to improvements, as no 
man will invest capital in laud when he knows his only reward 
and recompense is £6 to the pound rent. Lastly, the idle, 
thriftless tenant is put upon a par with, and has the same 
chance as the industrious, and while a premium is thus put 
on sloth and indifference, we can only expect the worst con- 
sequences. 

"Then, as to the amount of rent, I would say let there be a 
Government valuation and revision every 35 years, and let the 

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60 IKISHOWEN, 

rent or valiie be apportioned and determined by Government^ 
which would, I conceive, be equally just both to landlord and 
tenant.* When the rent was once fixed, it should be obligatory 
on the tenant to pay it, or otherwise sell his interest . and leave 
the farm ; and in case of refusal to sell, the landlord should 
have the power to remove him by ejectment ; but except for 
non-payment of rent, or in another case to be mentioned pre- 
sently, the power of evicting should be withdrawn from the 
landlord. The other case to which I refer is when he would 
wish to obtain a piece of land for his own hoTia fide use, either 
to farm it or to erect mills or manufactories upon it, the land- 
lord should have the power of* taking it, provided he paid the 
tenant the marketable value thereof, or such fine, in case of dis- 
pute, as to the government valuator would appear just and fair. 

But as regards those who lately purchased properties in the 
Landed Estates Court, it may be said the case is very diflferent, 
inasmuch as they at the purchase paid the full amount the land 
was worth. The answer to this is, that notwithstanding their 
purchase, they have no more right to the tenants' improvements, 
then existing on the land, than the man who buys a stolen horse 
has a right to retain him when the owner is found. 

That something should be done to prevent the evils daily 
arising from the unsatisfactory state of this vexed question, with 
the least possible delay, is most desirable. It is also better to 
give with seeming grace, and before it is too late, what eventu- 
ally must be conceded, however reluctantly. That such will be 
the case in regard to tenant-right there can be no rational doubt, 
for now, in Ireland, 

" Another race arise, 
Stretch their limbs, nnclose their eyes, 
Claim the earth and seek the skies." — Montgomery. 

An able writer in the Popular Evicydopcedie, published by 
Blackie & Son, London, Edinburgh, and Glasgow, says, in 
regard to property in land : — 

" The relations of landed property are among the most com- 
plicated and most important in civil society. Nevertheless, 
hardly any subject of law and politics has been investigated 
with so little profoundness. In no one has prejudice gained 
such an ascendancy and resulted in such important consequences. 
Writers have even gone so far as to call owners of land the 
only true citizens ; and all others who chance to have no 
immediate share in the soil of the state where they reside, are 

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TENANT-BIGHT. Bl 



styled by them mere strangers — ^tenants at will — a hoaueleaer 
rabble, dependent on the good pleasure of their landlorda— ai 
class> of people who, in affairs of common interest, are scarcely 
permitted to hear, and never to speak ; whose duty is obedience 
to their natural masters, the proprietors of the land." Sueh^ 
as is well known, ar^ the opinions of the majority of Irish 
landlords. If the commentators in question were of their own 
class, they could not explain them more faithfully. The article 
in question goes on to say — 

" Kant has particularly shown that genuine property arissB 
first in and by the State. Before him, men were led away by 
the customary ideas of positive law to regard the occupation of 
property as an act by which an object of nature becomes, once 
for all, united with the person of the possessor, in such a^ 
manner that every other person must abstain from the use of 
it, even though the owner should leave it unemployed, (if it be 
a piece of laud wholly uncultivated) or be witliout the ability 
to use it (as if it includes a large district.) But there is no 
reason, aside from the positive law of the land, why one man 
should be authorised to bind for ever the will of others ; and it 
is impossible in regard to the soil, because, in this way, it wpuld 
be made for ever dependent upon the will of the first possessor, 
and others might be excluded from the very means of existence. 
Hence, private property in land is among the institutions which 
are first established by the State ; but it must be observed 
that these still remain subject to alteration, whenever the good 
of the State seems to require it. Apart from the State, a mait 
has no unalienable property but his own person, and a daim 
npon others for a regard to his personal dignity, which arises 
from the worth of his nature, and makes it unlawful for others^ 
to use him merely as the instrument of their own purposes^ or 
to avail themselves of his powers, or the fruits of them against 
his will. Labour is, therefore,, the foundation of property, 
apart from the institutions of the State ; and its visible sign, 
that is, the alteration of form produced by it, gives notice ta 
others that they, are to abstain from the use of the article thus 
appropriated. 

'^ In new States, established by successive conquests, a certain 
portion of the whole fell to the chief, who had to apply it to 
the support of his immediate . ^-ttendants, anothier nortion waff 
assigned to the attendants themselves, and, after certaan suiv* 
divlsionfi and tithings, it- was given up to the oommunity as 



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§8 tirisHoWBir. 



common property. This common property was enjoyed, not 
unrestrictedly, but on condition of appearing to do military 
•Mvice.'* He then goes on to explain the meaning and origin 
of what was called thaneland, bookland, and fsh-od, or feudal 
possessions, and continues : — 

" The intermixtures, substitutions, and modifications, which 
these relations subsequently underwent, it is not necessary for 
us to dwell upon. We need only show how, in the modem 
States of Europe private property in the soil may be traced ta 
common property, and the clear evidence which it bears of such 
an origin, in order to prove that it depends upon a grant on the 
part of the community, and that hence the owners of landed 
property have no right in the soil, but what is permitted by the 
State. What they receive from the State is not an acknow- 
ledgm^it and confirmation of a right, which they before 
possessed independently of such acknowledgment, but the right 
itself. It is'no arbitrary right, but it stands in close connexion 
with certain duties, and its existence and continuance are subject 
to the State legislation. The owners of landed property dor 
not constitute lie people, but only a single class, bound, like th» 
rest, to devote their all to the promotion of the public good, 
Eeason hafl no small voice in deciding what is actually contained 
in the existing rights. To sound reason it is evident that eveiy 
person must be allowed some resting place on the earth ; hence, 
M long as any place is left capable of affording support to 
another individual, the proprietors cannot arbitrarily deprive a 
fellow-being of that support. They are bound to use the soO 
in such a way as to promote the general good. These ordinances 
are imperiously demanded by the state of society ; for the right 
of {property in the soil has no other end than to promote the 
cultivation of it for the general good, and it is on such condi- 
tions only that the State has distributed^he land among* 
individuals. Henoe the common good allo^f^tuMiiState to repeal 
all laws which are a restraint upon the free use of the soil as 
tithes ; to pronkote its distribution by breaking up entails, and 
to secure the cultivator, by not permrtting him to be driven 
from the soil at the will of the landlord, or even by making 
tecnporaiy relations permanent. These 'n^dinances concern the 
whole community } so that persons who are destitute of landed 
property have as good a right to be heard on this subject aa the 
knded propiietoro.'' 
> The above ia 80 ttxpiiciV rttaaoaabley philosophieal, and true^ 

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BTTRT, INCH, AND UPPER PAHAN. 53 

that comment would be utterly superfluous. It comes home to 
the understandiDg of every one. When ascendancy and pre- 
judice shall have become extinct — and they are gradually 
wealing away — and men shall be got to view this question, and 
deal with it in a proper spirit^ discarding for the landlord the 
claim of being considered something beyond the ordinary class 
of mortals, and regarding the occupier as something better than 
a squatter or a serf, opinions such as the above shall form th« 
basis of an adjustment of this vexed question — namely, th« 
proper relations to each other of landloixl and tenant in Ireland. 



Chapter VIII. 
Burt, Inch, and Upper Fahan. 

We will now make a short circuit through the varioiw 
parishes, for the purpose of noting some particulars necessarily 
omitted in the previous chapters, and we will commence with 
Burt. 

Six miles north-west of Deny is the small parish of Burt, 
which contains, according to the Ordnance Survey, 10,673 
Statute acres. As in the Muff district, the living is a perpetual 
curacy, in the patronage of the Dean of Derry, to whom th« 
tithes go. The curate's net income is £83 yearly. In the 
Boman Catholic divisions it forms part of the union <^ Burt, 
Inch, and Upper Pahan. There is a Presbyterian Meetinghouse 
in Burt, which is in connection with the Creneral Assembly. On 
the shore of Lough Swilly stand the ruins of the castle of Burt, 
in a tolerably perfect state of preservation. This castle con- 
sisted of a square keep, with semicircular towers projecting 
from two of the angles, and it was strengthened witili an out- 
ward wall. It is supposed to have been built by one of the 
O'Dohertys in the 1 5th century. It seems, too, to have been the 
principal residence of Sir Cahir, for though Elagh was restored 
ta him, it had previously been partially dismantled by his father. 
IVevious to the erection of the present Catholic Chapel of 
Burt, mass was celebrated in the ruin on the summit of Qreinan 
HilL There is a neat parochial house at Burt for the Catholie 
curate ; it is at the very base of the Hill of Greinan. The 
population of this parish was, according to the census of 1861,* 
g,723. ^ 

* The population of each of the parishes is taken from the censne 
letoms of 1861. 

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ft 4 IKISHOWBN. 



Ineh district eompiises the ieland of that name. It containfi 
Sy099 «tatute acres. Population, 972. A castk, bnilt bj the 
<yDoherty in the 15th century, stands on this island. Here, 
it is said, he confined O'Donnell, one of th« rival chieftains of 
Tyreonne^f who had been made prisoner in his own house. 

His keeper having released O'Donnell from irons, he made 
himself master of the castle which had been bis prison. He 
was then besieged by his rival, Rory, whom he killed by throw- 
iflg down upon him a large stone from the battlements. This 
eastk was granted with the island to Chichester, being part of 
the forfeited barony of Inishowen. In 1641 the island was 
held by the insurgents, from whom it was taken and garrisoned 
for the king. In 1689 General Kirk, with two ships laden with 
supplies for the garrison of Derry, unable to pass the army of 
James at Oulmorc, sailed into Lough Swiily, and encamped on 
the island, where he remained for 15 days, and again entering 
Lon^ Foyle relieved the almost famished citizens. The island 
is about a mile distant from the mainland of Burt, and the 
same distance from Fahan Point and Rathmullan. Its surface 
is ragged towards the north, but more level towards the south, 
wliere the land is in a fair state of cultivation. Inch House is 
the only seat. In 1813 a bat;tery was erected on the north 
point facing Rathmullan, which with that on the latter shore 
cc»npletely commands the. lough. 

^e living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Dean 
si Derry. The district was erected in 1809, when seven town- 
lands were separated from the parish of Templemore. The 
curate*§ salary is £83. The church is a small but neat edifice. 
la the Catholic divisions the parish now forms part of the union 
oi Bart, Inch, and Uppt»r Fahan. 

The castle of Inch is similar in architecture and design to 
tiis castles of Burt and Aileach, and all three were probably 
erected at the same period. The two former are in a more 
perfect state of preservation than the latter, of which only a 
portion of one of ^the semicircular towers now remains. It 
staads on a commanding eminence of 248 feet elevation above 
sea level, in the townland of Elaghmore, and on what I regard 
as the site of the ancient palace of the Kings. This place, of 
an elevation about the same as Tara's, with all the signs of 
occupancy and of cultivation from a remote period, seems more 
Ulely to have been used as a Royal seat, and more suitable for 
that purpose than that which has of late come te be regarded 

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BURT, INCH, AJTD UPPBR PAHAN. C5 

aa 8uch^ namely, the bai*e plateau of W^ feet elevation on i2w 
Bdmmit of the Hill of Greinan. Such an altitude might serve^ 
indeed, for a summer- hotuey but under the parallel of 65®, mi 
exposed to the full influence of the northern blasts, it could 
scarcely be said to afford " a Comfortable prospect." It has 
been often asked, " What's in a name f* Well, though it musi 
be admitted there is little, and that the rose by any other name 
would smell as sweet, yet, no one will deny that even in a name 
there is somstkin^, or, that the term JElagkmore^ which gignifiei 
great Elagh, was not conferred at random. And, as applied to 
the subject under consideration, it would go to show that here 
stood the great palace of Elagh. 

The parish of Upper Fahan is situated seven miles N.W. 
&om Derry, and contains 10,040 acres, some of which is rich 
and exceedingly well cultivated, and its mountains afford good 
pasturage. The Scalp, which is the highest, is 1,589 feet above 
the level of the sea. Near Fahan Point abundance of dscy 
slate may be found, lying close on the shores of the lough. Ib 
this parish was the famous Abbey of Fahan, no traces of which 
now exist ; but there is the grave of St Murus, and a ho]^ 
well, which are much resorted to by the people of the neigh- 
bourhood. St Murus, as already noticed, was Abbot of this 
monastery. 

The living in the parish is a rectory, in the patronage of the 
Bishop, alid the tithes are <£271 net, per annum. The glebe 
contains 62 acres. The Church is a large edifice, with square 
tower and four pinnacles. There is a Roman Catholic Chapel^ 
which was built in 1833, and a Presbyterian Meetinghouse at 
Cashel. There are three National Schools — ^namely, Birdstown, 
CamshanUagh, and Toobin ; and the principal seats are Glei^^ 
goUen, Birdstown, Rosehill, Fahan House, and the Glebe House, 
There is a Parochial House here for the Parish Priest of these 
united parishes, which was built by the Rev. Mr. M*Eldowney, 
on three acres of land given by the late James Doherty, Esq.y 
of Redcastle. There is an old altar at Cashel, on which Mass 
was offered previous to the erection of the present chapel. Is 
1861 the population was 2,148, 

The subject of the following memoir, the Most Rev. Dr. 
M*Devitte, was a native of this parish : — 

About the year 1745 a youth quitted his father's home^ 
which stood on the ascent of an Irish mountain. A friendly 
VttiMl <tdnveyed him te Franceu He entered college, completed 

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56 INISHOWBK. 



his stadies, and was ordained a priest. His career as a student 
was most distinguished indeed. He possessed good natural 
abilities, which he did not neglect to cultivate. He had tra- 
versed the wide field of theology, scripture, canon law, and 
history. He was a scholar, a well-bred gentleman, and a holy 
priest To see him and converse with him one must of necessity 
have respected him. He had for years frequented the lectures 
of the Sorbonne, and was a doctor of that famed university. 
His voice often resounded in its halls, as he maintained a thesis 
against some of the best divines of France. The King oftea 
honoured the occasion with .his presence. He had been at 
court — ^was known to the King and some of the best families 
of the " old nobility." He had been for a time chaplain to a 
foreign embassy. After a residence of twenty-four years he 
quits the friendly shores of hospitable France, and sails for 
Ireland. He visits his native parish. Upper Fahan. His aged 
mother is still alive, but is surprised to find that the little black- 
haired boy, who left her roof some twenty-four years before, is 
now a grey-haired man. For a few years he served as mis- 
sionary priest. The bishop of his diocese. Dr. M*Colgan, died^ 
and this learned ecclesiastic was selected to fill the office, for 
which his learning and piety so eminently entitled him. And 
the end proved how prudent was the choice. 

A short time after his consecration he held a confirmation in 
his native parish. Few, perhaps not one, is now alive wha 
remembers that day. The sacrament was administered in the 
open air, for there was no church at the time. The spot can 
be pointed out till this day. It was in a field, and along a 
hedge-row at Eushfield. Before his death — and he died about 
the end of the century 1797 — his diocese had many churches ; 
and the number of his priests had been very much increased. 
He founded a little seminary at Claudy, on the banks of the 
Finn, and became president and principal professor. The house 
in which it was held is standing to this day, but it has long 
since been coiiverted into a farm-house. It is just a plain 
thatched building, not unlike many of the farm-houses of 
Ulster. The only thing that seems to recommend it is the 
great beauty of the locality. A number of young men were 
■oon coUected under its roof. Thanks to the old hedge school- 
master and the old classical teacher, many such young men 
could easily be found anywhere, in Ireland, even during the 
^orst of the penal days. A logic class was formed, consisting 

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BURT, INCH, A17D UPPER FAHAK. 67 

at first of about twelve students. Oue who was present, and 
^ho drew up an account of what happened, telLs us that on the 
first day the logic class met, and as the good bishop began to 
deliver his first lecture, his big heart was filled to overfiowing, 
And the warm tears came trickling down his cheeks, Thejr 
were tears of joy. Twelve students in a logic class in Ireland, 
during the last quarter of the eighteenth century, was a great 
event. It evoked the Irish history of bygone days. It reminded 
the worthy prelate also of the schools, and the colleges, and the 
many happy days he had spent in " lovely France." 

The little seminary has its sunny memories, and its hallowed 
recollections. It formed the nucleus of the priesthood of the 
diocese in which it was situate, and furnished some worthy 
priests to a neighbouring diocese besides. 

The good bishop has long since been gathered to his fathers. 
He sleeps in his native parish, and the mountains on which he 
walked in youth overlook his grave. Of late, a worthy suc- 
cessor in the See of Derry, the Right Rev. Dr. Kelly, has 
erected a tablet to perpetuate his memory in the church of the 
Long Tower, Derry. 

I have lately seen the original receipt for the payment of the 
monument erected over his grave at Fahan, of which I subjoin 
a copy: — 

" Received from the Rev. Charles O'Donnell the sum of 
Xll 2s 8d for a tombstone, carriage of same, cutting letters, 
raising on a pedestal, over the remains of the Most Rev. Dr. 
Philip M^Davitte. " October 30th, 1800, 

" Present, " Wm. Cotlb. 

«Wm. M'Cafferty." 

He also founded a burse at the College of Maynooth fo» 
students of the diocese of Derry. Part of the money was paid 
by his successor. Dr. O'Donnell, out of the proceeds of the sale 
of his library and other efiects. I subjoin a copy of the 
receipt : — 

" Received from the Right Rev. Doctor O'Donnell £50 78, 
lid., on account of the Right Rev. Dr. M*Davitte's foundation 
for the Ecclesiastical Students of the Diocese of Deny in the 
College of Maynooth. 

''MaynoQth, 3l8t August^ 1802. 

'•ANDRBve Ihjmm." 

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0t tKidHotfEir. 



I luive ftlso lately examined a catalogue of his lihi^rjr. t find 
it contained 354 vols. There were 7 1 vols, of Theoldgy alid 
StJtiptute ; 180 vols, of French works ; and 103 vols, of works 
on English literature. It contained all the commentaries of A, 
Lapide on the Old and New Testament. These wer6 bonghi 
by the late Rev. Mr. M*Hngh, of Strabane, for £1 17s. 2d. 
Among the purchasers I find the names of the Ifev. Messrs. 
Morgan, M*Goldrick, M*Shane, &c., &c. ^^ 

For the sake of those who travel by rail from Deriy td 
Buncr;ina, I subjoin the following jottings of the line ; they 
emanate from the hand that supplied the legend of Kin-y-gow, 
and the traditional tale regarding Hegarty's Rock : — 

If the tourist, wearied while in Derry with recollections of 
Sir Cahir O'Doherty, Sir Phelim M*Devitt, Paulet, Dockwra, 
and Winkle ; of James 11. , Hamilton, Lundy, Walker, Roch% 
who swam two miles with intelligencfe of succour, and Kirke, who 
broke the boom and relieved the city ; if, I say, wearied with 
these thoughts, he expects to get clear of all historical recol- 
lections by a trip on the Londonderry and Lough Swilly 
Railway, he will find himself greatly mistaken. Every turn the 
wheels of the carriages give is either over historic ground or in 
the immediate vicinity of places rendered immortal by history. 
Even before the train has acquired half its speed he is quietiy 
rolling over the plain on which the above named Sir Oahir waa 
ehot, while gallantly leading his clansmen in the last strugglo 
made by the native Irish against the invader. A gentletaati 
who was indignant at the account of his death given by the Hev. 
Caesar Otway, has lately shown me the following, taken from 
" Lines on the death of Sir Cahir O'Doherty," describing his 
quarrel with Paulet, and written, he says, by a real 0*J)oher^ : 

** In Falian, the fairest of valleys I ween, 

Ides nestled an abbey, that famoas has been ; 

Before its high altar b'Doherty swore, 

» No food my lipfs crosses till Panlett's Ho more^' 

'Twas awfully sworn ; and awfully soon 

Did come its fulfilment in Paulett's dark doom. 

* • « « *^ 

** He broke through no treaties, cold-blooded and plaiin'd» 
fie murdered no chieftains while grasping the hand^ 
His was but the vengeance that manhood will take, 
When outraged for honor it cannot forsake. 

• • • • • 

** And so when raged fiercely the battle of Inch, 
MiiA •ouxag« 'fore Xmrnbers was ready to flinch^ 

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■^«*«*M^»»i». 



BURT, INCH, AND UPPER PAHAN. ti^ 

The chieftain flew forward where danger was most, 

Loud cb«eriDg bis corantdes to charge on tiieir host. 

Baek drew the red sqaadrons, of Saxon the choiee, 

Well knew they that clarion-ioned fear-spr«adiQg volcet, 

Bat see ! Oh I he's fallen, his banner in hand ; 

Cursed Scot, be the vessel brought thee to the land. 

" How nobly he's fallen, in battle, in front ; 

The sword in his right hand, and bearing the bnm't 

Of combat for Erin, for honoar, for creed ; 

His left grasping burner. *Tis glorious indeed.'* 

Bat, wliile thinking of all this. th« train g«ts to fall speedy 
and hnrrtes him through the rich fields and past the q>lendi<i 
villas which lie in the neighbourhood of Derpy, on to classic 
Koyal Aileach, of which so much has been said and so much 
remains unknown. After passing Bridge End station, the next 
spot that attracts attention is Bumfoot, nestling under the shade 
of the Scalp, by which it is completely sheltered from the 
northern blast ; while 

** The Druid's cromleach np the vale 

Tells how rites may change and creeds may fail." — Davis. 

On the hill above Burnfoot is the largest cromleach I ever 
saw. It is now called the Maylhore stone, and the view from 
it is as extensive as the most enthusiastic fire- worshipper could 
desire. On the opposite side is the hill of Greinan. But the 
train speeds on ; not too quick for affording a passini^ glance at 
all objects of notice ; however, if you cannot carry your thoughts 
along with you, it waits not for you to ruminate on them. 
And no easy matter it is to give even a passing thought to the 
ifiany interesting sights along this scenic rout, for where Nature 
fails to attract attention, art steps in to claim a passing notice. 
At Bumfoot we enter the artificially created lands of the slob. 
These, which in this remote part of the kingdom may well be 
ealled stiipendoas works of art, consist of a series of flats, 
wrested from the domain of old Neptune 'by the energy and 
enterprise of Wm. MOormick, Esq., and occupy various 
stretches of the sea-^coast from Bumfoot to the mainland beyond 
the Isle of Inch. As we glide over this level we can observe 
the ruins of O'Doherty's castle of Burt, where Mary Preston, 
the wife of Sir Cahir, was taken prisoner by tlie English, in 
the struggle in which he lost his life. On the island of Inch 
are the ruins of another of these castles, and, through the 
opening between them, you can observe a wide extent of charn* 
pagne ootmtry, with the mountain ranges of Western Donegal 

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60 IKISHOWEK. 



beyond. After admiring the broad, well-cultivated fields of 
Inch, with the ueat conifortable looking farm-houses, the whole 
surmounted hj the conical peak of the island in its warm cap 
of brown heather, we come to Fahan. It was thus referred to 
by a local poet : — 

*• There is not in this island a vale or a lawn 

Like that lovely recess in the bosoip of Fahan, 

Where Swilly's dark waves when the wind is at rest 

Beflect in brown lustre the wild monutain's breast." — (xraham. 

Here the train passes along the very water's edge ; the waves 
dallying and dancing up the side of the line, anon leaping up 
to the wheels of the carriages, as if in their wanton sport to 
detain the machine which, alike regardless of pastime or 
pleasure, keeps on its way. With feelings of holy awe and 
reverence I passed the romantically situated burying-ground of 
Fahan, where lie the mouldering remains of my forefathers : 

" On an Irish green hill side, 

On an opening lawn, bnt not too wide, 

No tombstone there ; 
Bat green sods decked with daisies fair, 
Nor sods too deep, but so that the dew, 
7he matted grass roots may trickle through ; 
Oh ! 'twere meriy into the grave to go. 
If one were sure to be buried so." — Davis. 

From this the mind naturally ranges up the far-famed bosom 
of Fahan : 

*• Wild is the region, yet gentle the spot, 

As you look at the roses Uie rocks are forgot, 

For garden gay, and primrose lawn. 

Peep through ihe rocks, as through night comes the dawn." 

Davis. 

And from thence over the hills to the mountain valley beyond, 
where the tall rush grows flat along the ground, in accordance, 
it is said, with the wish of a holy man of old, who was impeded 
by them in his flight from the persecutor. A few strokes of 
the piston brings you to the point of Bunaraw, where there is 
a station for the accommodation of passengers who come from 
the opposite shore by the ferry boat. Over the lough is Kath- 
mullan, always suggestive of thoughts of the notorious " trader'' 
of the 1 6th century, who kidnapped the young heir of Tyrcon- 
nell, and carried him a prisoner to Dublin. As you round the 
point and whirl smoothly down the strand, the scene is perfectly 
entrancing. On one side, the hills rising just at hand to a 

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LOWSR FAflAN AND DESEETEQKSnr. 61 

considerable elevation, their sides beautifully variegated with 
patches of bright green grass and brown heath, creating all but 
irresistible longings to toil up the steep ravines which now and 
then open to view, and from their summit feast your eyes on 
the beauties of the landscape around. On the other, the broad 
bosom of the lough, calm and bright, without an air to disturb 
its tranquillity ; the miniature surges chasing each other, as if 
in sport, and breaking in sparkles on the glittering sand ; the 
seagull — but I will not attempt to describe him ; nothing 
less than the pen of Griffin could do him justice — and the 
thousand and one other beauties, 

" Which I can ne'er express, yet cannot all conceal." — Byron* 
As you look down the lough it appears completely landlocked, 
the mountains of Fannet and Inishowen seeming to run into 
one another, and to shut out its entrance entirely from the view. 
On the Inishowen side, Deserteguey lies stretched out before 
you like a map, rising gently from the water's edge to the 
summit of the hills, which enclose it on the north and east, 
among which is the bare blue range of Mamore, which, even 
at this distance, is singularly attractive. On the opposite side 
the cultivated valleys are not so plainly visible, but the scenery 
is interesting enough to claim a portion of attention. Amid 
such surroundings the train arrives at the station ; and were it 
not for the kind reception he is sure to meet from the friendly 
people of Buncrana, the tourist would think his journey only 
too short 

Chapter IX. 
Lower Fahan and Deserteguey, 

Proceeding northward, the next in order is th6 Parish of 
Lower Fahan, which is bounded on the west by Lough S willy, 
and contains 24,783 acres. Population, 4,801. Much of the 
parish is mountainous, but the valleys are well watered and 
productive. Freestone is to be found, and there is abundance 
of limestone. All along the west of this parish, as far as it 
touches the sea, the inlet of Lough Swilly is deep and spacious, 
and large quantities of oysters, codfish, and haddock are taken 
in it There is a Coast Guard station at Buncrana, and a 
battery at Neid's Point, which was erected in 1812. The livinaf 
is a peipetual curacy, in the patronage of the Hector of Upper 

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6A INISHOWEN. 



Fahan ; tithes, £283 net. In the Eoman Catholic divisions, 
this parish forms part of the union of Lower Fahan and 
Pesertegney. The principal chapel is at Cockhill ; it is a large 
and beautiful edifice, of modem construction, high sidewalla, 
pointed windows, and lofty square tower, in which a handsome 
and sweet-toned bell has lately been suspended. In the burying- 
ground are deposited the earthly remains of the illustrious 
Bishop Maginn ; but more of this by and by. The Protestant 
Church is in the town of Buncrana. There is a Presbyterian 
Meetinghouse and Methodist place of worship. The principal 
seats are Buncrana Castle, once a residence of the O'Doherty^s 
and O'Donneirs, but now fallen into decay —one of the towers 
and the dungeon beneath only remain. A new castle was built 
by Sir John Vaughan, in 1717. There are also the Lodge, 
Eockfort, Eiverview, The Cottage, St. Helens, and Westbrook. 
There are National Schools at Ballymacarry, Tullydish, Bun- 
crana, Cockhill, lilies, and Drum fries. A curious fort, or cainiy 
composed of loose stones, having similar ones as outposts, may 
be seen near Bailinary. 

In this parish is the t«)wn of Buncrana ; its population in 1861 
was 685 ; it is distant ten miles from Derry, with which it is 
connected by rail. Markets are held on Tuesdays and Fridays, 
and fairs on the 9th of May and 27th of July.* Buncrana was 
of ^considerable importance in the reign of Elizabeth, but it 
afterwards fell into decay, and was restored and laid out in its- 
present form by Sir John Vaughan, in 1717. It is beautifully 
situated on the western shore of Lough Swilly, and is much 
frequented as a watering-place. A very costly and spacious 
building, erected by a local building company on the very edge 
of the lough, and designed for a hotel, has just been completed. 
This establishment is well calculated to enhance, among bathers 
and excursionists, the attractions of Buncrana and its neighbour- 
hood. Loughs Swilly here expands into an arm of the sea, 
bounded by mountains and rocks of majestic character, and 
forming a capacious harbour, of easy access, suitable for vessels 
of any burden. Vessels are engaged fishing for sole, plaice, and 
turbot, which are taken in large quantities, and of a superior 
kind. Buncrana is the head-quarters of a Constabulary district. 
In the centre of the town is the Courthouse and Bridewell, a 

* Other fairs are held at Baueranft) though, as I believe,. the);; are noi 
enrolled- at the Pateut Office. 



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LOWER FAHAK AND DBSERTEGNET. 63 

large and handsome building, erected by the late Wm. Todd, 
Esq., at an outlay of i£l,300, and presented by him to the 
county on this being made a town for holding Quarter Sessions. 
In the immediate vicinity are extensive mills and factories for 
spinning and weaving fine and coarse linens, the property of 
the Messrs. Eichardson, of the neighbourhood of Belfast, which 
employ a great number of hands. The scene of the following 
legend is the banks of the beautiful river Crannagh, which 
flows into the sea on the north-west of the town. 

Slieve Snaght is at the north east end of a short but beauti- 
fully serrated range of peaks, which gradually diminish in 
height in the direction of Lough Swilly, until they are lost in 
the steep abrupt crags near the confluence of the Ooanbwee and 
Crannagh rivers. From their junction the river is called the 
Crannagh, and at its mouth is situated the town of Buncrana ; 
hence its name, " Foot of the Tree-clad River." Within the 
memory of the present generation, or perhaps I should say the 
lingering remains of the past, the valley of the river was one 
magnificent forest, and, as I heard old people tell, you could 
walk upon the branches of the trees from Buncrana along the 
whole course of the river, far up on the mountain sides. A 
fringe of stunted oak, hazel, and birch, still grows along the 
water's edge, the sole remaining indication of its former leafy 
grandeur. But at a period long anterior to the past and pre- 
ceding generations, and during one of those many exciting 
struggles so common in the end of the 16th and beginning of 
the 17th centuries, between the ancient Milesian possessors of 
the soil and their Saxon successors, a Gow^ or smith, famous for 
his skill in manufacturing warlike implements', was driven 
before the victorious conquerors from place to place, imtil at 
last he thought he had secured a safe retreat far up among 
those mountain fastnesses. Whether the patriot smith was any 
relation to the Gow Crom of Scott's Fair Maid of Perth, or the 
famous Neal The Man, I know not, but certain it is that for a 
long time he continued, in defiance of edict and proclamation, 
to supply the hardy mountaineers with arms of the finest tem- 
pered steel, in their many sanguinary raids on their slowly, but 
surely, advancing foe. At }ast the keen scouts of the vigilant 
enemy found out his wild hiding-place and armoury, up at the 
hill foot, behind those grand old woods, and taking him in the 
act of preparing supplies for their now broken and scattered, 
though still undismayed assailants, they determined to quench 

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64 INISH0WE5. 



for ever, in his heart's blood, that hearth which so often glowed 
with the red hot iron in preparation for their own destruction. 
They cut the head off the poor smith, stuck it on a pole, and 
left it there to give a name for ever to the village which in 
aftertimes sprang up around the spot, Kin-y-Grow, (pronounced 
to rhyme with low) or the Smith's Head. But the most won- 
derful part of the story remains yet to be told ; for though his 
life-blood was shed by the incensed soldiery, still his hearth was 
not extinguished, nor his patriotid labours concluded. Ever 
since, from night-fall till morning, in the calm of the summer 
and the angry tempests of winter, the ruddy glow of his fire 
can be distinctly seen by every inhabitant of that wild moun- 
tain valley. Often have I gazed upon it at the distance of two 
miles, with supernatural awe, softened, it is true, by the nightly 
recurrence of the scene ; and though I could plainly observe 
the iron borne from the fire to the sounding anvil, yet, owing 
to the distance, T could never " hear his bellows blow," nor the 
ring of his ponderous hammer. Let no incredulous philosopher 
attempt to explain away this nocturnal phenomenon by a Will- 
o'-the-Wisp theory ; this light is much too fiery red, too steady 
and unchaiiging for that. He is engaged, as every old woman 
can tell you, in the manufacture of aims for the enchanted band 
of Elagh ; and, from his former dexterity, and his close atten- 
tion to business, there is every likelihood of his having, " when 
the time comes,'' such a supply of needle-guns for them as will 
enable them to enter th^ lisits with the best military tacticians 
of the day. 

As Lower Fahan was so long the scene of the pastoral 
labours of the illustrious Bishop Maginn, it is but right that 
the following precis of his life should be inserted here. Edward 
Maginn was bom at Pintona, County Tyrone, on the 16th of 
December, 1802. When he was four years' old his parents 
removed &om Fintona to Buncrana, and, at the same iLne, he 
was put under the tuition of his granduncle, the parish priest 
of Monaghan, where he remained for eight years. He then 
rejoined his parents in Inishowen, where he pursued his studies 
until his 16th year, under Mr. Thomas MK)olgan, of Greg»- 
mullin, Clonmany, a graduate of the University of Paris. Mr. 
M*Colgan was intended for the priesthood, but was obliged to 
give up his studies on account of ill health. At the age of 
16 young Maginn left Ireland, and entered the Lish College, 
Paris, where he spent «yen years. As a scholar he waa re. 

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LOWER FAHAN AND DESERTEGNEY. 65 

markable for his ardour aod application. In 1823-24, and 
'25 he received tonsure and minor ordera, and was invited by 
the bishop of Meaux to accept a benefice in his diocese, which 
offer he gratefully declined. In 1 825 he left Paris, was ordained 
priest by Bishop McLaughlin, and appointed to the curacy of 
Moville. Enthusiastic by nature and temperament, fearless in 
danger, no respecter of persons, "official or officious," an 
inxpassioned patriot, an ardent lover of the peasantry, fond of 
oral controversy, of simple and accessible habits, well used in 
the traditions of the soil, partial to the ballads and innocent 
amusements of his flock, he was well qualified for the mission 
he had begun, and soon became the darling of his people. He 
ccmtinued in Moville till 1829 ; took part in the " Derry Dis- 
cussion ;'' and in the struggles for Catholic Emancipation was 
O'Connell's great ally in the North. On the death of his unde, 
the parish priest of the united parishes of Fahan and Deserteg- 
ney, he was promoted to the pastorship of those parishes, and 
zealously exerted himself on the political questions of the day. 
Of local matters, on which he employed his powerful pen, were 
the appointment of an exclusively Frotestant magistracy in 
Inishowen in preference to members of the old Oatibolic 
families, who were qualified for, and entitled to, the office, and 
against the violence exercised in 1833 and 1834 in the collection 
of tithea In his communications he assumed, without apology, 
the tone and position of a protector of his people. He was 
the inveterate enemy of secret agrarian societies and oath-bound 
associations, and took the greatest pains to root them out. He 
-was the promoter of education, and adopted the national system 
as the best practical measure for the iilstruction of the great 
mass of the people. In his own parish he established five of 
these schools. In 1843, when Bepeal became the leading 
question in Ireland, Mr. Maginn was most energetic for the 
promotion of that measure, which was to give his country again 
a place among the nations of the earth. In 1 845, in consequence 
of Dr. McLaughlin's inability to discharge the duties of bishop, 
Eav. Mr. Maginn was elected to that office, and on the 18th of 
January, 1846, was consecrated Bishop of Orthosia, and Boman 
Catholic Administrator of Deny. This event gave the greatest 
satisfaction to his many admirers ; and the people of Deny, Mo- 
ville, Fahan, Buncrana, Maghera, Cloughcon, Camdonagh, 
Malin, Clonmany, Coleraine, FaughajivaIe,Omagh, Strabane,and 
Cappagh, eontributed £200 to present him with a testimonial 

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66 INISHOWEN. 



of their regard. His administration of the affsdrs of the 
diocese was beyond all praise. When the extraordinary calamity 
of 1846 and 1847 made extraordinary measures necessary, 
he kept a vigilant eye over the finance committee of the Inish- 
owen Union. Nor were his attentions limited to the locality 
in which he lived ; he felt for all Ireland, as shown by a letter 
which he addressed to Paulett Scrope, Esq., M.P., in which he 
frankly avows his indignation against the Government for 
allowing the people to die of want, in the following remarkable 
words : — 

'^ I don't hesitate to say to yon that there is no means nnder 
heaven that I would not cheerfully resort to to redeem my 
people from their present misery ; and sooner than allow it to 
continue, like the Archbishop of Milan, I would grasp the cross 
aind the green flag of Ireland, and rescue my country or perish 
with its people." His famous letters to Lord Stanley on the 
Confessional are well known, and of themselves sufficient to 
immortalise his name. 

He regarded the Young Irelanders as a band of misguided 
patriots, and pitied as much as he condemned them. He and 
his clergy were opposed to that party ; and when a compromise 
was effected between the more moderate of the young and old 
Irelanders, under the name of the Irish League, they still held 
aloof; a policy which he afterwards regretted, and which, no 
doubt, was unwise. In giving expression to his sentiments on 
this topic, and speaking for himself and his clergy, he said : — 
" Their only regret now is that they did not join it at an earlier 
date, as their example might have been followed by others ; 
and by the reunion of old and young, and the concentration of 
public opinion on it, the enthusiasm of the rash but devoted 
patriots of the country would have been constrained and directed 
into proper channels, and made conducive to the object all have 
in view — the restoration of our Irish Parliament." 

On the 16th of January, 1849, on his way to Deny, he was 
seized with typhus, which terminated in mortification, and on 
the 17th he died, aged 53, having completed the 3rd year of 
his pontificate. His remains are interred at Cockhill. It seems 
most unaccountable that a suitable monument has not yet been 
raised to the memory of this illustrious prelate, or that nought 
save a slight tei^poi-ary wooden shed surrounds the spot where 
his honoured remains are deposited. There is surely an over- 
sight in this : — 

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LOWBB TAHAN AKD DXSSBTBONST. 67 

Shall greatness thvs foigotien be, 

Andgenins and nobiHtyf 

Bhali no memento raised on highi 

Or storied ls<dnmn testify, 

To fattafe tutte» aad men tmbom, 

Whatvirtnes did his life adorn? 

Forbid it, Heayen, Maginn should be 

Forgotten by his conntry ; 

Forbid it, yon, his people dear, 

He ptied, taught, and loved to cheer ; 

Forbid it all, who nobly do, 

H(AOiir to whom there's honotir due. 

LeaTing Lower Fahan, we proceed in a north-westerly direc- 
tion along the Swilly, and enter the parish of Besertegney, 
which is thirteen miles from Deny, and bounded cm the north 
hy the Atlantic Ooean^ and on the west by Lovgh Swilly. It 
contains 7,577 acre& Population, 1,534. The hmd is tolerably 
f ertUe, and yields barley, oats, flax, and potatoes. Iron ore is 
abundant, and there are also indications of cc^per and lead. 
The living is a rectory, in the patronage of Uibe Marquis of 
Donegall, and the tithes amount to Xl47. The Glebe House 
stands on a glebe of 166 acres, and the church is a small neat 
edifice, on the shore of the lough. 

In the Boman Catholic divisions, this parish forms part of 
the union of Lower Fahan and Des«i;egney, and there is a small 
ohapel at GreenhilL The children of this parish are educated 
at ^e national school, which is at Meenagh. 

Apart from the wickedness and folly of enacting laws to 
compel people to worship the Almighty in forms contrary to the 
dictates of their minds and consciences, the penal laws were 
productive of another evil of equal, nay, if possible of greater 
enormily, namely the opportunities which they afforded to the 
dishonest for dark deeds of treachery, or for satisfying their 
avarice and cupidity. The civil and military authorities may, 
in those troubled times, now happily past, now and then have 
exceeded their duty in administering those cruel laws, and for 
such they were personally accountable ; not so, however, when 
as officers imder the law and doing as it directed and obliged 
them. In the latter case it is yUam they were not the authors 
of crime, legal or otherwise, but rather the unhappy instruments 
by which severe laws came into operation^ But where can a 
parallel be found for the wretched being who dogged the foot- 
BbepB of his friend and kinsman, and who, having discovered 
the fugitive's lonely retreat, goes, for filthy lucre's sake, and 

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68 INISHOWEN. 



betrays him to the soldiery ? Yes, there is one character suffi- 
ciently infamous to be his prototype ; and so historically well- 
known that further allusion to him is unnecessary. 

The fallowing story will illustrate what I have above referred 
to, and show how in those days the authorities had sometimes 
no option but to enforce the law. In the village of Ballynary, 
about two miles north-west of Buncrana, on the banks of the 
Swilly, is a sea cave which served as a hiding-place for an 
humble and zealous priest of the name of CVHegarty. From this 
wild seclusion he was accustomed to steal, under the shadow of 
night, to carry the ministrations of his religion to the hearths 
of the faithful fishermen around the coast, and the hardy moun- 
taineer farther inland. His retreat was unknown to all save 
his sister, who hved with her husband and family in the above- 
named village. None of her family ever questioned her on the 
object of her journey, when she departed from her cottage in the 
grey dawn each morning to carry him the provisions for the 
day. At last, her husband suspecting her mission, was led by 
curiosity to watch her unseen, and so became acquainted with 
the hiding-place of her fugitive brother. This, once known, he 
had not the fidelity to keep secret, for, tempted by the reward 
held out for such a discovery, he led a guard of soldiers from the 
garrison at Buncrana to apprehend the priest, his own brother- 
in-law, in that lonely dwelling. Often did the poor woman 
return that morning from the entrance of the rude domicile 
charging her brother to be wary, and endeavouring to cheer 
him with the hope that these ruthless times would pass away 
and be succeeded by others, when he could live in the habitations 
of men, and go abroad in daylight in the service of his divine 
Master. But the dawn was brightening, she might, if she 
remained longer, be discovered, and her object at least suspected. 
She received the usual parting benediction, and commenced her 
toilsome ascent, when, horror of horrors, there, full before her, 
were the soldiers descending by the same path to terminate 
that life which she had so long and so anxiously laboured to 
preserve. She called frantically to her brother that the guard 
was upon him. He rushed from the cave, above him were the 
soldiers, beneath the whole breadth of the deep flowing Swilly, 
but deeming it the friendlier of the two, and putting his trust 
in God, he plunged into its depths with the bold, almost 
reckless resolve of swimming to the opposite shore. The 
guard, seeing they were in danger of losing the object of their 

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LOWER FAHAK AKD DSSERTEaKET. 69 

pursuit, or fearing that if they fired and killed him in the 
water they should have no evidence of the feet, called to him 
to return and they would spare his life, but no sooner had he 
gained the top of the precipice than they seized him, cut off 
his head, and buried his body on the spot where they had 
committed the deed. His poor sister, the informer'g wife, seeing 
all that had been done, became a raving maniac. Though fear 
of the soldiers' vengeance prevented the peasantry from mitrlring 
his grave, yet was the memory of the place so engraven on their 
hearts, and carefully transmitted from father to son, that the 
villagers' children could at any time point out to the curious 
stranger that sad memento of the horrors of by-gone days, 
under the name of Hegarty's rock. Long afterwards, when 
civilization had made a proper impression on the governing 
classes, and when the disabilities imposed on the professors of 
the Catholic faith had been removed, two gentlemen, the Bight 
Rev. Edward Maginn, D.D., and Hugh O'Donnell, Esq., M.D., 
visited the spot, and with the view of testing the accuracy of 
the account, dug up the clay, atid brought a portion of it to the 
College of Surgeons, Edinburgh, where Mr. O'Donnell was then 
etudying, for analysation. They afterwards raised a green mound 
on the spot, which now marks the place where the priest was 
interred. 

The old chapel at Cockhill was built by the Rev. John 
Maginn, uncle of the bishop. Before its erection mass was 
celebrated on an old altar, of rude construction, near Cockhill. 
For the last 100 years,* the first priest of whom I could 
obtain any account in this parish was the Rev. Dr. M*Devitte, 
who acted for some time as parish priest. He was succeeded 
by Dean O'Donnell, who was the sole pastor of Upper and 
Lower Fahan, Desertegney, Donagh, and for a time of Clon- 
many. He was succeeded by the Rev. John Maginn, who built 
the little chapeL Mr. Maginn was succeeded by the Rev. Wm. 
CDonnell, as administrator, in 1818. Mr. CDonnell ex- 
changed for Clonmany in 1829, and was succeeded by Dr. 
Maginn, who held it up to his elevation to the episcopacy, and 

* I wiU give, as I proceed, the names of the several parish priests of 
each parish for the last hundred years ; though they have been obtained 
from tradition, for there was no registry kept, the account is, in the 
main, an accurate one. I will also note the little altars on which mass 
was celebrated during the penal times, and before the erection of the 
present chapels. 

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70 iHiSHowEir. 



then retained it aa his mensal f^arisK He was suoceeded in 
1849 hj the Bev. B&cnaid Ma^;ill, th« present pastor. Eightjr 
years ago so great was the scarcity of priests in this distaiet 
that it wad qnite a common thing lo ipend two or three dajs 
searching £or the priest in case of a sick ca21 or baptism^ or axtj 
other clerical duty* 

Wb will now proceed to the parish of Clonina&yi but not 
through tite Gap of Mamore, the usual way to it from Deset-^ 
tegney, as I intend to attempt a full description of that famous 
pass in another chapter. We wiU^ therefore, return and go by 
the maQ car road through Meentagh Glen. Meentaghs, or th« 
Bar of' Inch, contains 3,258 statute acres^ much of which is 
coars^ mountain pasturage, but some of the low-land lying 
aroimd the base of the hills is of fair quality. Iron stone is 
abundant, and quantities of it have been carted to Buncrana 
recently for ex^rtation. About the oentre of the valley is a 
beautiful sheet of water abounding with trout and eeL Tho 
superfluous waters of this lough are carried away by a small 
river which empties itself into the Crannagh. As we turn down 
to the lough we pass the National School of Drumfries, which, 
with its snow-white walls and neatly kept yard, stands out in 
pleasing contrast with the broad expanse of heath and mo<»-land 
around. The building in question likewise serves as a post- 
office, which is kept by the master. 

The highway passes along by the vei^ of the lake, at the 
north end of which, nestling in a creek at the foot of the hill 
and surrounded by trees, is Meentagh House, a country resi- 
dence and shooting lodge, the property of £. Harvey, £sq., of 
Lancashire, England, owner of an extensive estate in this 
neighbourhood. The inhabitants of the glen are thrifty and 
industrious, and derive much of their support from the reanng 
of cattle and sdieep, while for flax raised in it, the Inishowen 
Farming Society have given their first prize for several years 
in succession. 

Chaptbh X. 

Leaving Meentagh, we enter the parish, and two miles fttilih^ 
on, the town of Clonmany or Qcddyd/aff^ re^)ecting which an 
anecdote is related that you will hear by and by. The parish 
of Clonmany is bounded on the north by the Atlantic) and on 

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CLONMANY. 71 



the west by Lough Swilly, where that inlet enters from the 
ocean. 

From Leenan to Dunaff, from Dtmaff to Binion, from Binion 
to Carrickabrachy, from thence to Figart Point, onto Strabreagy, 
and from Figart Point to Easheany, the whole of the coast is 
perhaps as wild, and romantic as any other of the same extent 
even in this county. Along it are bold and elevated cliflGs, with 
spacious caverns open te the sea, picturesque bays and far 
extended sand beaches, toward which the vast green billows 
chase each other or expend their unavailing fury upon them in 
mountains of foam. The interior of the parish too is no less 
rugged and diversified. Its entire area is 23,376 acres, two- 
thirds of which are irreclaimable mountain. Beginning at the 
west we have within it Dunaff Hill, Cruckurris, Bulliba, 
Baghtan, which is the most elevated, Binion HiU, and the 
mountains of Giblan and Coolcross ; the cultivated land lying 
chiefly in valleys among these ranges. The mountains are 
composed of whinstone and clay slate, and at Ardagh are lead 
veins, which have never been worked. The Clonmany river, 
which rises in Barnan lough, near the foot of Slieve Snaght, 
flows through the centre of the parish, and empties itself into 
the bay of Tullagh. Two com mills and a flax mill are built 
along it, and its waters abound with trout, eel, and salmon. 
This river, before it enters the ocean, passes through a vale of 
uncommon grandeur. Leaving Clonmany town and crossing 
the bridge, the road to Urris passes along its western boundary. 
On the left of this road and quite near it, Baghtan rises proudly 
to an elevation of 1800 feet above the sea, and in the same 
range, separated only by Butler's glen from Baghtan, is the 
almost equally imposing and beautiful Slievecerragh. Passing 
along these hills the valley extends to the golden sands of 
Tullagh, which form its north-west boundary, and shut out from 
view the surface of the ocean in that direction. A beautifully 
shaded highway, running parallel with the river, goes down 
along its eastern side to the sea at Binion House, and along this 
road the beauties of the whole valley may be seen to advantage. 
First, the Glebe House and village of Straid, which consists of 
a single row of houses, stand facing us beyond ; further down, 
the parish church, a neat, solid edifice, with low square tower, 
situated on a gently rising ground below the road ; beyond 
this, stretching to the very foot of the mountain, is the well- 
wooded demesne of Glen House. "We can scarcely discern the 

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72 nasHOWBH. 

buildings as they are sliaded oyer by the lofty beeohes, elms, 
and other trees growing high and close around them. Finally, 
on this side we can catch a glimpse of Binion House, a hand- 
some modem mansion^ the residence of Mrs. Loughery, the 
respected proprietress of a considerable portion of this neigh- 
bourhood, and of the cMa in the back ground rising 
precipitously, tier on tier, to the summit of the hill, and of the 
broad blue ocean surging around thevi. What with rolling 
billows, high towering hills, rich and well cultivated fields, 
meadows, lawns, and woodlands, this valley is ornate with 
scenic grandeur, and blessed in a high degree with the riches 
and bounties of nature. In a line of rocks on the TuUagh 
beach the sea has scooped out a low cavern, from the roof of 
which a chink or narrow opening leads like a chimney to the 
upper surface of the rock, and through this a jet of sea water 
is thrown vertically for several feet by the force of pressure 
from below. This natural fountain, with its curious hydro- 
dynamic movement, is an object of considerable interest ; such 
is the view of this valley from the road near Keelogs. We 
wiU now cross the fine old bridge which spans the riv^, and 
proceed along the western verge ci the valley, on our way to 
XJrrisand Mamore. , A drive of a few minutes brings us to 
the church, now Protestant. This church was founded by St. 
Columb in the 6th century ; and in connexion with it was also 
a rich monastery. History makes honourable mention of the 
clergy of this parish ; thus it is said in the Annals of the Foiur 
Masters, *' Loughlin MacGiUa-Calma, Yicar of Cuil-Maine, a 
wise and pious clergyman, died a.d. 1499." The graveyard ia 
at present literally piled with heaps of the dead ; it is raised 
many feet in height, and seems to be wholly vaulted underneath, 
while almost every grave is covered with a flagstone ; nearly 
all these stones lie flat on the surface of the earth, and are, for 
the most part, unhewn and uninscribed. But there are inscrip* 
tions on some, and several of these cannot fail to attract the 
visitor's attention. On the north side of the church, and 
surrounded by a wall, are two tombstones, on one of which he 
may read — " Underneath this stone lieth the remains of Mrs. 
Mary Chichester and only daughter to Henry O'Neill of 
Shane's Castle who died on the 12th day of May 1786. Also 
those of her son Eev. Dr. Chichester who was for many 
years Eector of the parish of Clonmany and who to the great 
grief of his relations, his friends and his parishioners departed 

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CLONICANT. 73 



this life on the 31st of August 1815 ; aged 72 years.'' On the 
other — '' Underneath this stone are l^e remains of CaHierine 
Ball relict of Samuel Ball Esqr. of Grousehall and daught^ of 
the Bey. Arthur Chichester who departed this life on the 11th 
daj of April 1799 in the 49 year of her age.'' On another 
stone, of best Italian marble, whidi is in the southern half 
of the yard, is engraved the figure of a stag, with the following 
inscription : — " H^e lye^ the body of Martha, wife of Mr. 
Henry McNeill daughter of Col. Edward Carey who died the 
29th year of her age and on the 17th day of July 1725," 
Also, " Here lyeth the body of Col. Daniel McNeill who de- 
parted this life on the 11th day of September 1709,. aged 59 
years." I may mention that this Colonel McNeill lived at 
Binion, and owned some property in the neighbourhood ; but 
his memory is held in the utmost detestation by the inhabitants 
of the parish. He led a wild and irregular life, and kept a 
number of low retainers about him who aided in procuring him 
the meaits of gratifying his odious and immoral propensities. 
The epitaph on another tombstone runneth thus : — " To the 
memory of Denis CDonnell, gentleman,* who departed this 
life on the 9th of April 1778 aged 78 years. Also Anne his 
wife who departed this life <m the 13th ci May 1769 ; aged 
45 years. Their issue 5 sons and one daughter." On another 
is engraved a hand, chalice and book, and inscribed, " To the 
memory of Bev. Pateick M*Faul who departed this life <m the 
14th March 1806 ; aged 32 years." The last I will note is at 
the west angle of the yard, and the epitaph runs thus, ^' Erected 
to the memory of Archibald M^Murray who departed this life 
September the 18th 1828 ; aged 77 years." The artist must 
have had an eye to business, or have longed for fame, fear he 
adds, " Letrd. by James McMurray." 

I should not omit to mention that there is aJso a neat monu- 
ment in honour of some members of the Doherty family, of 
Glen House — of Neal Doherty and «of Dr. Doherty, who died in 
Honduras. In the yard is a stone on which, as tradition says, 
St Columb prayed, and stations are still made by the people 
here on St Columb's day, the 9th <tf June. At the east end 
of the church is a smaU cellar, where one of the Maginnesses 
lay in fever while on his banicJiment, and in which the country 
people used to make malt. 

* O'Donnell was a poet, and the author of a celebrated song, entitled 
" Hayraka-na-bhollon." r^r^^r^I^ 

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3gl 



74 IKISHOWEN. 



The following amusing anecdote is related of this dmrch, or 
rather of an incident which occurred there at one time when it 
was undergomg repairs. In the neighbouring village there 
lived a certain bandit who was known by the sobriquet of 
Gaddydubh or the black thief. This amiable character had an 
assistant or companion, and ihey arranged one night to prepare 
a feast, no matter at whose expense. It was agreed that ihe 
chief should effect an entry into the church, kindle a fire, have 
water boiling and cabbage in readiness, while his companion in 
iniquity should go and steal a sheep. Accordingly, both went 
to work with due diligence. At that time a Scottish Boman 
Catholic lived in Urris, and with commendable friendliness used 
frequently to visit a Protestant countryman of his who lived 
about a quarter of a mile from the church. On the night in 
question, passing by the lonely edifice, he was somewhat startled 
to see light in the church at an unusual hour. Curiosity 
prompted him to walk up to the door, and peering through the 
keyhole he beheld a tall, lank, swarthy form, with a ponderous 
knife or cleaver chopping what he considered was human heads. 
A large fire was burning, and over it was fixed a huge pot or 
cauldron, from which clouds of steam ascended. He then 
hastened to his friend's house, and found within only his mother, 
an old lady who was afllicted with rheumatism, and unable to 
move about without the use of crutches. 

" Jeannie," said he, " ye widna ken what I seed the nou." 

" Ough, Ranald, sure no, what might it been V* 

" "Weel, Jeannie," said Eanald, in a whisper, " I seed the deil 
in your kirk." 

" He had on a muckle pot, and was boiling awa' at bodies 
heeds." 

" I widna b*lieve that, Ranald, the deil couldna' come into our 
kirk, and could I walk I'd go there to convince ye that yer 
mistaken." 

" Ne'er say it again, I'll carry ye," said Ranald. 

So getting her on his back they set out to the church. When 
they arrived there the black thief was stiU alone, and hearing 
Ranald's heavy footsteps, he thought it was his companion who 
was coming with the sheep, and running to the window, in an 
anxious under-tone cried out, " Is she foU f" 

To be thus so familiarly accosted by his sable majesty was 
too much for Ranald's nerves, so, depositing the old woman 
on the gravel walk, he ungallantly fled back to her house. Still 

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CLOmCAKY. 75 

more wonderful to relate, old Jeannie also got to her feet, and 
taking a near way through the fields, was home before him, and 
from that night till her death, many years after, she never felt 
a pang of rheumatism. The shock wrought an effectual cure. 
The black thief died in the course of nature, but his Tillage 
still retains the name of Gaddyduff, and is now a stirring little 
market abd fair town, eight ndles north of Buncrana. Markets 
are held in it twice a week, and a fair on the first Tuesday of 
March, June, September, and December. The living is a 
rectory and vicarage in the patronage of the Marquis of Done- 
gall, tithes £331. The Glebe House was built in 1819, at a 
cost of X776, and stands on a glebe of 365 acres. 

Just beyond the church, and on the same side of the road, 
stands Dresden. It is now in ruins ; but enough remains to 
show that it was once a most magnificent seat. An outline of 
its history and of that of its several occupants will, I am sure, 
be read With interest. In the first half of the 17th century a 
man named McLaughlin lived in thetownland of Claar. Claar 
skirts the river Foyle, and is situated between Moville and 
Bedcastle. M*Laughlin still preserved a moiety of the property 
which his forefathers once held, for he was owner of the town- 
land of Claar. He had two sons, DomhnaU and Peter. These 
were destined for the Catholic priesthood. On th«r voyage 
to the Continent, to enter a Catholic college, the vessel wae 
shipwrecked : so says tradition. They were driven on the 
English coast, where, a nobleman interested in behalf oi the 
two young men, took them to his home, and offered them the 
hospitality of his mansion. He proposed, if they conformed 
to the religion of the Established Church, to have them educated 
in one of the English Universities. Domhnall, in an evil hour, 
yielding to the seductions of the evil one, accepted the proposal 
Peter met it with a stem refusal. Years rolled on. Peter 
proceeded on his journey to the Continent, entered collie, and 
was ordained priest ; and, after a lapse of time, returned to 
his native land. Domhnall became a minister of the Estab- 
lished Church. By a singular coincidence one became rector, 
and the other parish priest of the same parish of Clonmany. 
Nothing coidd be more o|^>osite than the circun&tances in which 
they were placed. Domhnall had a large well-built church, 
but no congregation save two or three members ; for, even at 
the present day, the Protestant population of the parish scarce 
exceeds a dozen aonla. He must have been a man of great 

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76 INISHOWEN. 



taste, if we are to judge from the residence He built, and the 
manner in which he beautified and adorned it ; for, though it 
is now a ruin, the tourist must admit that, of the many lovely 
spots with which Inishowen abounds, Dresden is the loveliest 
of them all. The scenery is more than lovely : it is sublime. 
In fact there is everything which constitutes sublimity ; rich, 
pasture lands, well cultivated fields, venerable old trees, that 
have seen many decades of years ; and, in the distance, lofty 
overhanging mountains, a glen and waterfall inferior to nothing 
of the kind in the north of Ireland ; besides the broad blue 
waves of the Atlantic roll in at the beach at the distance of 
about half-a-mile. This beautiful mansion waA built by 
Domhnall McLaughlin, known by the sobriquet of DomhnaU 
Gorm. Peter lived in an humble tiiatched cabin by the sea-side, 
in the townland of CrossconnelL His congregation consisted 
of thousands of souls ; but their only places of worship were 
the little altai's which stood by the sea-side, or on the ;noimtain 
top. They held but little communication witii each other, and 
both Uved to a good old age. Domhnall died first His death 
took place in 1711. Peter wept unceasingly for him, and soon 
followed him to a sorrowful grave. Domhnall was a poet and 
a wit, and Peter's qualifications in these respects were little 
inferior. Many of their sallies and repartees are yet remembered. 
On one occasion Domhnall was coming down to his church when 
Peter, returning after having celebrated the Sunday mass, met 
him on the way. Domhnall accosted him thus, '^ One going 
over, the other coming back." Peter replied, " Not so ; 'tis 
one going up, the other going down." Their mother lived for 
many years after DornhnalPs appointment to the rectory, and 
often gave vent to her grief for his change of faith ; and that 
too with all the eloquence of the poetry of her native tongue. 
I subjoin a fragment of one of the ballads she composed on 
this head ; it contains a translation of her wail as nearly as I 
can render it : — 

" Can it e'er be spoken, 

How my heart is broken, 
For thy fall, O Domhnall, from the ancient faith ! — 

With less of sorrow, 

Conld I view to-morrow, 
My lost one herding on the monntain brown, 

Than strange doctrines teaching. 

And new tenets preaching. 
At yon lordly window in his silken gown." 
After Domhnall Grorm, the next occupant of Dresden was 

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CLONMAKT. 77 



one M'Devitte, and after M^Devitte, the next was a Mr. Clarke, 
or Clarke Mor, as he is called, to distinguish him from his 
brother. These gentlemen owned extensive properties in Inish- 
owen and the county of Armagh, and it is said they contended 
with each other for some time for the possession of Dresden. 
Mr. Clarke had a strong inclination for building mills. He 
intended to build one in Glenevin, here convenient to his 
seat, and made a watercourse from Ballyhallion river, near the 
bill of Bulabin, a distance of two miles, around the sides of 
Slieve Ceeragh, by his tenantry ; some of whom he obliged to 
come from Grellagh, in the parish of Cloncha, and kept work- 
ing without food or wages at this watercourse. When the 
water was within 60 perches of the mill site it sank through 
the bowels of the mountain through the loose stones, (skildra) 
and the undertaking had to be abandoned. He then built the 
mill at Keelogs", on the opposite side of the river. He built 
another at Tonduff, in the parish of Desertegney, and obliged 
his Grellagh tenantry, by a covenant in their leases, to bring 
all their com there to be ground. The next occupant of 
Dresden was Dr. Chichester, rector of Clonmany, who, as we 
have seen, died in 1815. Dr. Chichester is represented as a 
kind and benevolent man, and was always greatly respected 
by the Catholic inhabitants of Clonmany. His relative, the 
Marquis of Donegall, often visited here, and sometimes spent 
the summer at Dresden. The next occupant of Dresden was 
the late Major Metcalfe. He was the son of a gentleman of 
property in Yorkshire, and who was by profession a physician. 
His father went to reside in Bome, and young Metcalfe was 
carried thither across the Alps in the arms of his mother. 
The French Revolution having deprived Mr. Metcalfe of his 
property, he was obliged to return to England when his son 
was 12 years of age. While in Bome, the father was intro- 
duced to Clement XIV., who was then Pope ; and he became 
acquainted with the unfortunate prince Charles Edward Stuart, 
and his brother, the Cardinal De York, who, after his brother's 
death, assumed the title of Henry the IX. of England. Pope 
Clement remonstrated with him for so doing, on the ground 
that as the people of England expelled his family from the 
throne he had no right to assume the title ; to which the Car- 
dinal replied, ** That, if not king by the authority of the people, 
he was by the authority of Gk)d." Prince Charles was one 
day shown some articles of vertu by Mr. Metcalfe><|> he asked 

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78 INISHOWEK. 



where they were manufactured, and, on lining informed that 
it was in England, replied, " I like everything English.'' A 
few years after his return to England, young Metcalfe obtaLaed 
a commission in a militia regiment quartered at Windsor Castle. 
When this regiment was about to be disembodied, he was sent 
for by theking, Greorge III., who questioned him regarding Prince 
Charles and the Cardinal De York. His interview wil^ the king 
was of the most satisfactory nature, for in afew dayshe wasgazet- 
ted for a commission in the 7 9th Begiment of foot, ccHnmonly cal- 
led the Cameronians or Highlanders, then commanded by a 
descendant of Lochiel. The king paid for his outfit from the 
privy purse. He served in Holland under the Duke of York, 
was secretary there to General Sir John Moore ; and, in 1801, 
he served in Egypt under Sir Balph Abercrombie. After this 
he came to Scotland, next to Ireland, and finally to Inishowen. 
He resided in Dresden from 1816 to 1841, and was the last 
occupant of that house which has since fallen into ruins. The 
farm has been added to that of the Glen House, and is now 
the property of Mrs. Eebecca Dpherty. I should mention that the 
gallant major, at his departure from Dresden, removed to Cam- 
donagh, where, having Uved to a good old age, he died in 1859. 
ELis remains are interred in the Catholic burying-ground ; he, 
having for some years previous to his death, belonged to that 
communion. 

Passing Dresden we arrive at the Glen House, a spacious 
and substantial mansion, situated in a highly improved and 
richly embellished demesne, the property of Mrs. Doherty, 
relict of the late Michael Doherty, Esq. Glenevin, or the fair 
glen, to which I have already alluded, passes through this 
demesne. Truly has it been called Glenevin, for there is 
nothing in the north of Ireland, or, for its extent, in all Ire- 
land, can equal its surpassing beauty. It is a narrow glen, 
its sides are steep, in some places jprecipitous ; for a short dis- 
tance from Glen House a portion of it is planted ; beyond this 
the tall fern, the glossy birch, the quivering mountain ash, the 
purple heather, flourish in wild profusion. A copious stream 
runs along the base of its shelving sides, which rise to the 
height of more than 100 feet above our heads ; these afford 
cover tor grouse and woodcock, and that is plentifully stocked 
with trout. The leading attraction of this glen, to the tourist 
at least, is its waterfall. Having travelled along the brook 
for about half-a-mile, and feasted his eyes with4he charms of 

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CLONMANT. 79 



the scenery, he rounds a sharp angle of the hill, and all at 
once this cataract bursts upon his view. The waters come 
rolling down that sluice^like rock, white and foaming, from a 
height of 40 feet. The rock itself is as black as ebony. The 
gorge through which the waters pass before they tumble down 
the precipice, is wedge-shaped, or has rather the appearance of 
th6 frustrum of a wedge ; it is about 30 feet high, 15 yards 
in breadth at top, and about one and one^half yards at the 
edge of the fall. The basin into which the waters descend is 
six feet in depth, and seems to have been worn out of the 
solid rock. Ivy creeps along the face of the gorge, holly and 
oak overhang the waters ; while, full 90 feet perpendicular 
above, the mountain-ash waves his boughs, like feathers of the 
desert bird in a warrior's plume. The basin underneath is 
named Pohl-an-eas, or the ferment pool, on account of the 
foam with which its surface is constantly covered. I should 
not omit to state that hawks build their nests in the face of 
the cliff. The following Unes regarding this glen and water- 
fall were composed by one Mr. M*Laughlin, a local poet, and 
are, I conceive, well worthy of a place in these pages : — 

** The sim*8 parting beams on the hills are delaying, 
The vale's overshadowed where daily I roam ; 
But one lingering ray's on the waterfall playing, 
Over deep Pohl-an-eas with its bosom of foam. 

As I stand in that glen so romantic and lonely, 

Where the wild plover screams from its heath-boWer of greeni 

Nought now is heard save the cataract only. 

And its echoes, that roll down the mountain ravine. 

Pohl-an-eas ! how long, since a lover of nature, 

With thrilling sensation of pleasure and aWe, 

First gazed on thy face ; where each timo'^wom feature * 

Bean impress of Him who gave nature its law f 

And ages shall roll, as the spray that rolls o*er thee, 
Unheeded, unfelt as the sigh of the gale { 
When the heart that now pours its e&sion before thee 
Shall be laid in the dust, a mere clod of the vale.*' 

A little beyond the Glen House, the road turns off sharply 
to the west ; at this point fully bursts upon our view the 
isolated peak of Dunaff, tinged with a deep cerulean hue. 
Baghtan, the mighty Baghtan, is towering above us ; the Bay 
of Tullagh rolls along at our feet ; and, beyond the bay, Binion 
Hill rises 818 feet above the surface of the waters. The vege- 
tation which this hill affords is carefolly husbanded, if the 

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80 ISTSHOWIEK. 

numerous walls, nmning from the base to its summit, be ad- 
mitted as evidence of the fact. Binion House, the residence of 
Mrs. Loughery, is here very distinctlj visible ; a little south is 
the old graveyard of Both-Chonais, and on the beach below the 
house are three holy wells, which are called St. Columb's wells. 

Directly before us, stretching to a considerable distance into 
the water, is an extensive tract of low ground, on the further 
extremity of which is Tullagh. This tract divides Tullagh 
Bay from the Harbour of Kockstown ; and a little examination 
will suffice to show us that at one time nearly the entire of it 
lay beneath the waters of the ocean. To be convinced of this, 
the traveller as he passes along the highway between the 
National School of Crossconnell and the village of Bockstown, 
at a place called Drumshee, has only to examine a portion of 
the former beach of considerable length and great depth, and 
composed of many thousands of tons of regular shingle, with a 
little gravel intermixed. This beach is now nearly a mile 
distant from the waters, and fully sixty feet above their level. 

Some time ago Crossconnell was the residence of a very re- 
markable man. He is now dead ; but his memory is held in 
the greatest veneration, not only in Clonmany, but throughout 
the diocese of Derry. He was a well-bred gentleman, a soldier, 
and a priest ; with honour and distinction he served the King ; 
with zealous ardour he promoted the glory of God. The house- 
hold words by. which he is known briefly reveal his history — ^he 
is familiarly called the " Waterloo Priest" William (yDonnell 
was bom at Cockhill, in 1779. Soon after his birth his father 
removed to Eashville, from which one of his ancestors had been 
removed by Colonel Vaughan, under the influence of that law 
which precluded a Catholic from possessing a horse above the 
value of £6 if any of his Protestant neighbours took a fancy to 
the animal. Young O'Donnell received his primary education 
from Mr. Tom M'Colgan, the eminent classical teacher. In 
1802 he entered Maynooth College, where he finished his 
philosophical and theological studies. His health being some- 
what impared by his college life, he was unwilling to take orders 
in the church ; and, upon the practice of the law being proposed 
to him by his family, he declined both it and the medical pro- 
fession from conscientious scruples. General Hart having got 
a number of commissions in the army to dispose of among Irish 
families, and offering an ensigncy to Mr. O'Donnell, he accepted 
it, and was gazetted to that post in the 20th foot^ the 28th 

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GLONMAJrr. ^1 



March, 1811. He served with the army throaghout the 
Peninsular war with marked distinction. The following extract 
from the Bdfast Vindicator of March 31st, 1849, describing a 
-war medal presented to him, gives a short account of his career 
during that period : — 

" This medal records the battles of Yittoria and the Pyrenees. 
The former was a most brilliant display of consummate general- 
ship and military prowess, which has been crowned with the 
most complete success, over the most scientific and enterprising 
generals of the age, commanding the most daring, intrepid, 
veteran troops. The fruits of which victory were upwards of 
150 pieces of cannon, and more than 400 waggons of ammuni- 
tion, with the military chest and all their baggage and provision 
stores, with many prisoners. This officer witnessed his heroic com- 
panions falling on every side, amongst others the honourable and 
valiant Colonel Cadogan. Italso servesas a memorial of the differ- 
ent actions he had been engaged in, through the mountains of the 
Pyrenees, during that very active and sanguinary campaign, 
from the battle of Eoncesvalles, on the 25th July, 1813, until 
the victorious British army penetrated into France in November 
following. On the 25th July, his regiment (the 20th foot) 
al6ne sustained the brunt of the action for some hours in that 
quarter, and nobly kept the enemy in check until re-enforced 
by the 23rd and 7 th Fusiliers ; but not without considerable 
loss of life. He is one of the very few now surviving officers 
who have been engaged in that desperate conflict. In th» 
French reports of that action it was stated that the 20th regi- 
ment (British) had been totally annihilated. On the 28th 
July, before the battle commenced near Pampeluna, he had the 
honour of being selected by the general of the brigade (the late 
heroic General Boss) his aid-de-camp, (Captain Falls being 
already sent on duty), to acquaint the Conunander-in-chief, the 
Marquis of Wellington, of the movements of the enemy, when, 
after discharging this most important duty, and having returned 
to G^erai Eoss with his lordship's orders^ he was appointed by 
him (General Eoss) to a post of honour, where, in common with 
his brave companions, he shared in the high encomiums conferred 
by the Marquis, as appears in his despatch to Earl Bathhurst^ in 
which, in mentioning the gallant 4th division, he makes honour- 
able mention of the 20th foot in particular, when the enemy 
was completely routed after a most obstiiuite and sanguinary 
resistance. The ground where the conflict principally raged 

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82 IKIBHOWSK. 



was, I am credibly informed, almost literallj covered with 
bodies of dead and dying soldiers of both armies. The close of 
the evening put an end to fighting aod pnrsTiing. When re- 
turning from the field he had the honour of l^eing complimented 
by his commander, and warmly congratulated by his surviving 
brother officers upon having so narrowly escaped the death- 
dealing French bullets, which carried off a portion of his 
garments. He has also been engaged in different minor actions, 
where many a fine fellow got his quiettLS made as effectually as 
it could be accomplished in the far-famed battle of Waterloo* 
When Napoleon was sent into exile, his Prince and his country 
dispensed with this gentleman's services in the tented field ; who, 
soon after, changed the sphere of his exertions, and transferred 
them in a more special manner to the service of the King of 
Kings and God of armies, retiring, as he hoped, in otium cum 
dignitate, 

" To husband ont life's taper at the close, 
And keep the flame from wasting by repose." 

The name on the war medal is " W. O'Donnell, lieutenant 20th 
regiment of foot.'' 

In 1818 he was ordained priest, and succeeded his brother 
as administrator of Upper and Lower Fahan and Desertegney, 
where he remained till 1829. During this period he was again 
called on to join the army, which he proposed to do in the 
capacity of chaplain to the forces ; but this being refused, he 
sold his commission and gave up all further connexion with 
military life. In 1829 the Eev. W. O'Donnell was appointed 
parish priest of Clonmany. In 1839 he was arrested for 
arrears of tithe, which accumulated not only on his own pro- 
perty, but on tjbat of some others in the neighbourhood of 
Buncrana. Though legally advised to resist the payment of 
this impost, he was incarcerated in Lifford jail ; soon, however, 
he ordered payment of the money, and his return journey was ' 
made quite a triumphal march, by the people of Strabane, Deny, 
and Inishowen, accompanying him with manifestations of joy as 
he passed along. As parish priest he devoted himself zealously 
to the duties of his charge ; he enlarged and improved the old 
chapel ; and, in 1843, adorned it with a tower and bell. He 
was the advocate of temperance, and the promoter of popular 
education ; he erected and furnished ^re National Schools in 
different parts of the parish* He closed his eventful life at hia 
residence in Clomnany, on the IQth October, 1866, in the 77th 



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CLONHANT. 83 

year of his age, uniyersally esteemed and regretted thronghont 
the length and breadth of Inishowen. His remains are interred 
in the family burying-ground at Cockhill, where a suitable 
monument marks the last resting-place of the hero saint. 

After passing Grossconnelly the road to the gap turns to the 
south-west It passes along the western side of Bs^htan, whichy 
on our 1^, rises proudly to an elevation of 1667 feet. There 
is but little vegetation on this hill ; its slopes are, for the moi^ 
part, bare and rocky. On our right, as we pass along, we hava 
a bird's-eye view of the district- of Urris, from Ballinacarta to 
IjeenankeeL The little farms are laid out with geometrical 
precision ; much of the soil is bare and cold, and is of that 
description known as cut-out bog. It is now undergoing a 
course of su})8oiling and improvement by the thrifty occupiers, 
-who are, as I believe, all tenants-at-wilL But, in the neigh- 
bourhood of Leenan and Urrismanagh, there is rich alluvial 
soil, every foot of which is carefully cultivated. The rent here, 
for the most part, is Xl 10s per acre. 

Leaving Urrismanagh, a zig-zag road which winds up the 
acclivity, brings us to the Grap of Mamore. This road passes 
through the gap ; formerly it was the only highway between 
Urris and Buncrana, hence its name the grecU or principal 
(mtlet. On the Desertegney side of the gap the road is very 
steep. This mountain pass has many of the features which we 
read of as belonging to Alpine solitudes. It is elevated about 
700 feet above sea level ; it is narrow, in some places being 
scarcely as wide as a carriage-way ; and, on either side in an 
almost perpendicular line, the mountains rise nearly seven 
hundred feet more above the head of the tourist. In the 
centre is a little glen, containing a lake, which seems to be 
supplied, chiefly, by the torrents of the surrounding hills, for 
in summer it is ahnost dry. A stream which flows from this 
lake, and gurgles down the ravine, is pleasing to the ear, and 
refreshing to the sight of the traveller who crosses this dreary 
wilderness. The gap has on its east side the hill of Mamore ; 
on its west that of Croaghcarragh ; the former is 1381 feet high, 
the lattei^ 1307 feet. Near the extremity of the gap is a holy well, 
where the country people hold a station on the l&th of August. 
Tradition says that a saint of old retired to this mountain 
fastness to meditate on the Great Creator, and supplicate hia 
mercy and protection ; and surely no more suitable spot for 
such a purpose could be found. The extreme solitude of the 



84 IKISHOWEK. 



place admirably adapts it for drawing off the thoughts from the 
busy world below ; while the mountains, rising in quiet 
majesty towards the clouds, are well calculated to direct tiiem 
to heaven. The extensive view he enjoys of ocean and inlet, 
island and headland, sun and shade, reminds him of the 
majesty and goodness of that God who created, and who 
governs, sustains, and protects the whole. I must not omit to 
mention that, in the palmy days of . smuggling, and when the 
gap road was the only one to Urris, its natural advantages for 
embarrassing the military were made use of by the adroit 
distillers. When their scouts gave intimation of the soldiers' 
approach, bodies of countrymen would betake themselves to the 
mountains, which overlook the gap, and hurl huge rocks down 
their sides with such overwhelming force as to render it im- 
possible for any person to attempt a passage. When this was 
done the soldiers were obliged to leave without accomplishing 
an3rthing, and the smugglers returned to their stills. 

The range of Croaghcarragh extends westward from the gap, 
a distance of about one and a half miles, to the waters of the 
Swilly. It divides the parishes of Clonmany and Desertegny 
at this point ; and it consists of seven spire-shaped peaks, in 
a straight line, with deep intervening valleys. I have already 
stated the elevation of the highest of these peaks. The rock, 
which is of the hard schistose description, is, in many places, 
tottering from the top of these cliflfe ; and heaps of debrisy 
thus formed, lie around their bases. It is somewhat strange 
that these d[isruptions have occurred on the eastern, and not, 
as one would suppose they should, on the western or stormy side. 
Between the sixth and seventh peaks are two small lakes, which 
look very romantic. One is named Lough Fad, the other 
Lough Crunn. The latter is very cosily situated at the base 
of one of the peaks, which winds round it in a semicircular 
form. This mountain amphitheatre is overgrown with luxu- 
riant heather, which affords a cover for multitudes of the 
vulpine species. From the upper lake there is no visible out- 
let ; but a verdant stripe of gra^, about as broad as a carriage- 
way, connects it with the lower one. This would seem to 
indicate an underground passage or a winter overflow. From 
the lower lake issues a copious stream, which, glancing along 
the adjacent slope, goes leaping and brawling from rock to 
rock to the sea. A little to the west of these lakes is the brow 
of the mountain, from which we had a magnificent view of its 

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CLONMANT. 85 



steep green sides, with heath and fern overgrown ; and of the 
bright waters of the Swilly, which were lit up with the rays 
of the evening sun, and across which was extended '* iffia 
golden path of rays." Fanet and its lighthouse were plainly 
visible, so also was the coast*line around almost to Horn Head. 
I>own below us we could faintly see, near the cliffs, three dark 
chasms, something like the shafts of deep mines ; these are the 
caves of Leenan. Proceeding towards them, though our jour-, 
ney was do^m hiU, it was truly arduous ; it was also dangerous, 
for we had to cross several places where chasms and deep 
fissures were partly revealed, beneath a slight covering of bog. 
A false step here was sure to be attended with serious con- 
sequences. At length, however, we aiiived at the first cave, 
which is named Uaimh-na-ban, respecting which a tale of blood 
and massacre is told similar to that which is related at page 
148 of the Cliff Scenery of South- Western Donegal, This cave 
is tunnel shaped, there being an entrance to it on the land 
side as well as from the sea. The land entrance, which seems to 
have been formed by the action of mountain torrents on the loose 
red earth composing one side of it, is about 60 feet in length ; 
then commences the cave which is about 40 feet in length, 12 
in breadth, and in some places 30 feet in height. At about half its 
length it branches off into another long and spacious hall, 
about as long, but not so lofty as the former one. The sea 
at flood tide washes through the whole of this lateral cave, and 
joins the incoming tide in the other. A portion of the roof 
has faUen in, at about the centre of the cave, forming a circu- 
lar aperture, or natural skylight, which throws a faint glimmer 
through its dingy interior. The north side of the land en- 
trance is composed of compact rock, against which a sohtary 
ivy is growing up ; its stem has attained extraordinary dimen- 
sions, being some 15 feet in height and about half a foot in 
diameter. The stem is quite bare and dry ; and, were it not 
for the shoots which it gives off, towards the top, and which 
cover a large portion of the rock with their broad unctuous 
leaves, one would think it devoid of vitality altogether. 

The second or central cave is named Phol-na-baccan, on 
account of its having been descended by a person named Diver, 
for the purpose of robbing the nest of an eagle which was 
situated on a ledge of rock, many feet below the surface within 
it. This is situated beyond the head of a little creek, in the 
grazing ground, and several yards distant from the^ocks. , It 

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86 IKISHOWEK. 

is circular ; and, to the surface of the water, is 25 or 30 feet 
deep. What depth beyond this it may be, or how far it 
extends underneath the ground, and beyond this opening, it 
was impossible to ascertain. Diver, in his favourite pastime 
for eagle hunting, secured a stout rope, one end of which he 
tied around him, and the other to a strong wooden peg that 
he drove into the ha.vk, descended this yawning pil^ and so 
harassed the eagles by his visits that at length they abandoned 
the cave. The name it now bears implies the hole of the tether- 
stick. Over a portion of the creek, approaching this cave, is a 
natural bridge of rock about 20 feet above the sea water. In 
the vernacular tongue it is called " The Bridge of Sighs ;" not 
on account of any supposed connexion between it and the cele- 
brated one of that name at Venice, but because it leads from 
the secord to the third cave, which is named Phol-Erricha, or 
the hole of repent<mce. The cave has been so called from the 
melancholy moa^ning sound made by the waves in pressing in 
through its subterranean vaults. The sea never recedes ht>m 
it, and the opening towards the land is a basin of considerable 
size, about 70 yards from the edge of the diff, scooped out of 
the level plain. A small stream of water flows into it, which 
must have formed the opening at first. The impression on 
the mind of the tourist, approaching it for the first time, is 
that persons are talking inside ; but upon descending a spiral 
path for about 20 feet he discovers the unreality of such a sup- 
position. He has then arrived at the utmost limit of descent ; 
and, about the same distance below him,, can discern the water 
slowly advancing and receding with each corresponding move- 
ment of the sea ; while the weird lamentable wail which^ ever 
and anon, falls upon his ear, is calculated to create an increas- 
ing sensation of fear and loneliness. Whether or not the re- 
fractory spirits of the "vasty deep'* do penance for their 
misdeeds within the pent up walls of Phol-£rricha, certain it 
is that in the more airy Uaimh^na-ban, the Leenankeellanders 
have often and again evoked a potent spirit, and to this day the 
tourist can plainly observe there the remains of the structure 
upon which the cauldron was seated while they performed their 
incantations. 

Our path to the village lay along the sheep-walks of the 
green hill-side ; and a dizzy path it was, for if any one lost his 
footing upon it, with nothing to hold by, with nothing to grasp, . 
he was sure to be borne, ledge over ledge, for hun4reds of feet 

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CLONMANT. 87 



along that fearful slope to the brink of the rocky precipice ; 
then one deep plunge, and it would be his last — 

»« To the depths he*d sink with babbling groan, 
Unknell'd, nncoffined, and unknown." 

The little Bay of Leenan is a beautiful sheet of water ; at 
its farthest extremity is a line of steep rocks ; on this side a 
handsome canal-like stream, which, running through the allu- 
vial plain, and dividing Leenanmor from Leenankeel, enters it ; 
its margin is diversified with green knolls and beaches of yellow 
sand. 

In bidding adieu to this mountain wilderness and the lonely 
shore, which we have safely passed, we must say they have in- 
spired us with feelings which, for a long time, probably never, 
will be effaced from our hearts. How well calculated are the 
works of nature, the cloud-capped hill, the shining lake, the 
towering cliff, the solitary shore, to impress the beholder with 
the power of their Authoi*. With what ineffable sway they 
work upon his feelings, and preach, not of this, but of another 
and a brighter world, where His omnipotence. His tenderness, 
His glory, His love. His wisdom. His providence, and all Hia 
infinite attributes will be revealed ! In a word, 
** If from society we learn to live, 
'Tis solitude should teach us how to die." 

We will now glance at Dunaff, but ere we leave I must re- 
late a little incident which occurred on the bridle way between 
Leenan and Urrismanagh. One of our little party, an invete- 
rate smoker, being in need of tobacco, asked a boy whom he 
met whether there was any shop in the locality, thinking, of 
course, that if there was, he could obtain what he required. 
" No," was the reply, " there is no shap here ; but there's an 
usquebaugha house beyond there." We must say, however, 
that the usquebaugha house received but little patronage, 
though there is very good Parliament whisky for sale there. 

Dunaff hiU is an isolated peak, presenting an elevated wall- 
like, dark, scowling front to the Atlantic, and pierced with 
caves that extend far in beneath the mountain, through which 
the waves pass and repass. On the land side it slopes gra- 
dually downward to the plain, and, amid the rocks, is well 
clothed with good pasturage for sheep. Some years ago an 
Urris man who, from his infancy, had learned to reach the shore 
by descending along those fearful rocks, went down one day 
for the purpose of gathering mussels, limpets, and other shell- 

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88 INISHOWEK. 



fish, which the poor people, not being able to afford their families 
better, were thankful to obtain, and accustomed to cook and 
use largely as an article of food. Having got down to the 
edge of the water he noticed that the tide had so far receded 
that he could easily enter one of these caves, where abundance 
of what he sought lay temptingly before him. He went in and 
commenced to gather, and worked so eagerly at it that he quite 
forgot his perilous position till the tide was close upon him. 
He then saw to his terrible dismay that the way by which he 
entered was long since covered, that strong surging waves were 
tumbling over each other through the mouth of the cave, and 
that all means of egress or escape were completely cut off. No 
resource was now left him but to fly before the boisterous 
element as far into the interior of the cave as he could. Here 
he had the good fortune to explore a recess into which the 
waters had never apparently entered ; but what a prospect lay 
before him, imprisoned in the bowels of the earth, a fierce storm 
beginning to rage outside, and the waters of the ocean, as far 
as he could view them through the vista of his cavern, white 
with foam. He hoped, however, that to-morrow would bring 
him relief, that the sea would ebb and restore him to light and 
liberty and home. In the meantime his poor family were in- 
consolable. A wintry tempest howled around their dwelling, 
the night was advancing ; they sat watching, still their father 
returned not ; the neighbours came to visit and console them, 
but none could whisper a word of hope, for all believed he had 
lost his footing on that dizzy cliff and tumbled into the sea, 
so they mourned for him as dead, and expected that in a day 
or two they might find his mangled body somewhere on the 
coast ; but week after week rolled on and not even that melan- 
choly consolation was afforded them. 

On the next day the prisoner saw not any possibility of 
escape, and, in short, three months thus passed without afford- 
ing him a chance to effect his purpose. But he was not quite 
alone, for numbers of birds made the cave their nightly retreat, 
and on the raw flesh of as many of these as he chose to kill, sea- 
weed, and shell-fish, he managed to subsist. At length about 
the end of March the fury of the waves abated, and the tide 
ebbed low enough to permit him to depart. When he regained 
his home, his friends and neighbours had at first some doubts 
as to his identity, but these were soon cleared up, and the joy 
of all was uncommonly great. His constitution had suffered 

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CLONMANT. 89 



much ; he was lean and feeble ; and, ignorant of the treatment 
he required in his then debilitated state, they prepared abun- 
dance of food, which they served steaming hot, and which his 
keen appetite prompted him to devour ravenously ; the result 
was that he died that very evening. 

Among the lofty and craggy mountains of this parish the 
eagle still builds its nest, 

** And draws its vigoroas yonng, 
StroDg-ponnced, and ardent with paternal fire; 
Now fit to raise a kingdom of their own, 
He drives them from his fort, the towering seat, 
For ages, of his empire ; which in peace, 
Unstain'd he holds, while many a league to sea 
He wings his course^ and preys in distant isles. 

Thompson's Seasons. 

As we return from Dunaff we pass Eockstown constabulary 
barrack, a large house of two storeys, and slated ; it faces the 
harbour of Eockstown. This was formerly called Kinea House, 
and belonged to one who bore the name of an illustrious Irish 
sept — ^to an O'Doherty. This O'Doherty, however, held all 
Urris in fee-simple from the Marquis of Donegall, and was a 
follower of, nay, even a captain, in the army of the Prince of 
Orange. A collateral branch of his family lived in Tullagh, 
who were of entirely opposite politics, and true and loyal sup- 
. porters of their legitimate King. At this trying epoch of our 
history the whole of the people, and nearly the entire of the 
ancient aristocracy, were strict Jacobites. The exceptions, and 
they were few, consisted of members of the higher classes ; in 
fact, 

** Here all were noble, save nobility ; 
None hngg'd a conqueror's chain, save fallen chivalry." 

But in some time Captain CVDoherty sold Urris to a Captain 
Charlton, and emigrated to America. Of the Tullagh family, 
one who had taken a mortgage on her property from Captain 
Charlton was, by a legal technicality, deprived of it, and re- 
ceived only the amount of the mortgage. The lady being de- 
tained on her journey from Deny to pay the mortgage, was 
unable to tender the money on the day agreed upon, but did so 
on the following day, on which Charlton had foreclosed and 
refused to accept it. Another member of this family was mar- 
ried to Mr. Edward Doherty, of Glenagannon. She, to pre- 
serve her estate, used to put in an appearance, according to 
law, once or twice each year in the Establieiied Church, On 

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90 INISHOWEN. 



one of those occasions, being called upon to make certain 
sweeping declarations against the doctrines of the Catholic 
Church, she heroically refused, and fled the place precipitately, 
leaving her cloak behind. It is but just to say, however, that she 
was not deprived of the property, notwithstanding this act of 
contumacy. One of her descendants is at present an opulent 
merchant in Camdonagh ; one a priest, in the diocese of Derry ; 
and another a learned physician. 

Besides the seats already noted, belonging to this parish, are 
Cleagh, the residence of the Eev. J. McLaughlin, P.P., and 
Termaine, the residence of William Doherty, Esq. 

The population, according to the last census, was 5,668. 
The first Catholic Chapel, after the penal times, was erected in 
this parish by the Eev. Mr. Sheil, in 1795. Previous to this 
mass was celebrated on a little altar at Urrismanagh ; it was 
of rude construction, and without covering ; also at Binion, at 
Anagh, and at Gaddyduff. The Catholic clergy during the last 
hundred years belonging to the parish were the Rev. Nathaniel 
O'Donnell. He succeeded Dean O'Donnell, who was for some 
time parish priest of Upper and Lower Fahan, Donagh, and 
Clonmany. Mr. O'Doanell was succeeded by the Rev. Mr. 
Corr, who was succeeded by the Rev. Mr. Shiel in 1794. He 
was succeeded by the Rev. William O'Donnell in 1829. Mr. 
O'Donnell was succeeded by the Rev. John Doherty in 1856, 
who was succeeded by the present pastor, the Rev. John 
McLaughlin. 

There are National Schools at Tiernasligo, Crossconnel, 
Gaddyduff, (male and female) Rasheney, and Beltra ; and con- 
stabulary stations at Gaddyduff and Rockstown. 

It has been well observed that biography is valuable as an 
example to imitate and as a beacon to warn. To praise desert 
can scarcely fail to stimulate virtuous actions, while the thought 
of being shown up in colours of infamy must frequently repress 
the vicious machination and forbid the atrocious deed. Such 
is my apology for introducing a short notice of a remarkable 
man, who was a native of this parish. But I may add that- I 
should not do so excepting that I have found, upon full inquiry, 
that there is not one living can claim, affinity to him, and, 
therefore, none to feel annoyed in the slightest degree. 

John Toland was a man of great parts, but who was not so 
happy as to be obscure. He was born in 1669, and brought up 
a Roman Catholic. At the age of fifteen he turned Protestant, 



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CLONMANT. 91 



and afterwards went to the University of Glasgow, from which 
he removed to Edinburgh. After having visited Leyden and 
Oxford he returned to Ireland, which he was soon obliged to 
leave to avoid a prosecution for writing a book styled 
" Christianity not Mysterious." In 1698 he published his life 
of Milton, which was followed by a deistical book entitled 
" Nazarenus," and another, the " Atheist's Liturgy," with 
several other pieces of a like tendency. This miserable reviler 
of the religion of his country, and who, from his inveterate 
hatred of all forms of Christianity more resembled Bipperda of 
Groningen, or Voltaire and Rousseau of France, than a native 
of Inishowen, was a spy, too, in the pay of Lord Oxford. He 
died in 1722. 

Feller, a French writer, says that Toland was bom at Red- 
castle. Dr. O'Donovan, in his notes to the Annals of the Four 
Masters, says he was bom in Iskaheen ; but, following the tra- 
ditions of the people of Clonmany, who, I may observe, have 
preserved their traditions with the utmost accuracy, I have set 
down this parish as his birthplace. I believe, too, that I am 
fully correct in so doing. They seem to have a vivid recol- 
lection of his name, and to be aware of his doings, though I 
am sure wholly unacquainted with Watkins, or Feller, or 
O'Donovan. They relate that when he was a boy he one day 
met the priest on the highway ; that some conversation ensued 
between them, and that the priest, after Toland's departure, 
remarked to one who was near that that boy spoke with the 
voice of the devil. He is known traditionally as £oghan-na- 
Leabhare, or John of the Books. 

We will now hasten onward, and as we pass through the 
village of Ballyliffin, pause to take a moment's notice of the 
scenery before us. Here we stand on a considerable elevation ; 
on our left, overhanging the main, is Binion Hill, before us, 

" The interminable ocean lies beneath, 
Far away the broad-curved beach stretched on ; 
And I can see the qoick-paced waves advance, 
One after one, and spread upon the sands, 
Making a slender edge of pearly foam 
Jnst as they broke ; then softly falling back, 
Noiseless to me on that tall head of rock 
As it had been a picture ; or descried 
Through optic tube, leagues off." — Athebstone. 

Such is PoUin Bay, viewed from this point, with its long 
curved beach of white sand, at the head of which is Carrick- 

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92 INISHOWEN. 



abrahy Castle ; and, amid the waters, far iu the background, 
stretches forth the promontory of Malin Head. But the old. 
castle and its surroundings will well repay a visit ; a descrip- 
tion has been sent me of the locality, from the fluent i)en of a 
gentleman who ardently loves this old land, and who, I believe, 
derives as much true enjoyment from the contemplation of its 
beauties as others from the possession of its broad acres* If 
not given in his own graphic style the narrative would suffer 
irreparable loss, so here it is : — " I now proceed to give you 
some notes of Strabregy and the Isle of Doagh, for the benefit 
of tourists to our northern coasts, and of those lovers of the 
sublime and beautiful who may not have an opportunity of 
visiting this, one of the many romantic but neglected Iboalities 
of Ireland. I have often thought that many of the lovers of 
grand natural scenery in Inishowen do not know half the 
beauty of their native peninsula. While they strain every 
nerve, and the purse strings, too, to gratify their taste by visit- 
ing the glens of Antrim, the wooded beauties of Wicklow, and 
the enchanting lakes of Killamey, they leave unexplored, at 
their own doors, so to say, bright spots of rare beauty and 
historic worth, until their claims to notice are pointed out by 
some tourist from a distance, or perhaps some modest village 
scene painter. These thoughts are strengthened by the 
sensation I observe created by some glowing descriptions lately 
published in the D&rry Jowmai of locaHties to which they all 
had easy access, but which were overlooked in the desire to see 
more distant places of more sounding fame, but which, perhaps, 
repay the sightseer no better. Are there not many of your 
Inishowen pleasure-seekers who know more of the Dargle than 
they do of Gleneviu, and of the Gap of Dungloe than of the 
Gap of Mamore, and yet I have heard a learned D.l). say he 
saw nothing so bold in the scenery of Wicklow as the same Gap 
of Mamore ; but of this again, my business now is to show 
you Strabregy. It's true IVe never beheld the beauties of 
Bhine laud, where 

* Blash covered wreaths woo the sun's golden ray,' 
nor have I seen the olive groves of Italy, nor sailed on the 
winding Seine ; but I have steamed up the Thames, crossed the 
Forth, wandered 'where Clydie rins smoothly,' and strolled 
listlessly on the banks of the Liffey, and yet I have never, in 
all my wanderings, looked upon a scene of greater natural 
grandeur than that which is presented to the traveller's ad- 

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CLOKHANT. 93 

miring gaze as he takes his stand upon the heights above 
Ballin-da-bo. A hundred feet beneath him he sees the green 
rolling waves of the Atlantic chasing each other towards the 
entrance of the inlet, and, after spending their rage upon the 
Bar for breaking up their sport, proceed calmly into the still 
smooth waters of the lake. Before him, on the opposite side of 
the inlet, sweeping boldly round in a si)lendid curve, rise the 
Knockamenny Bens, some hundreds of feet, crowned by a 
richly variegated sward of heath, soft green grass, and wild 
flowers ; closely adjoining them, embosomed in low sand hills, is 
Lag Chapel, the oid^t in this part of Ireland, and inmiediately 
on the other side of the chapel Knockglass rises its lofty front 
in calm defiance, like a vigilant sentinel keeping watch and 
ward over the quiet graveyard at its feet. On the richly culti- 
vated shores of the upper part of the lough stand the residences 
of several gentlemen, magistrates, clergymen, and others. First 
in order is Malin Hall, a handsome modern mansion, built on 
the site of one of ODoherty's castles, whose cellars are said to 
still remain. It was afterwards occupied by Chichester, 
Marquis of Donegall, when he gave his fetes-champetre in 
Inishowen. Contiguous to tJie demesne is the dean little town 
of Malin, with its triangular fair green in the centre, and at the 
head of the lake stands Drumaville, the residence of J. M*Sheffry, 
Esq. On the same side is the Glebe House of Donagh, and 
Fair view House. At the western extremity of the lough is Krn- 
acroaghera, (the hangman's portion) a l»are, uncultivated point, 
deserving of notice solely from the circumstances connected with 
its name. After the attack on the garrison of Berry in 1608, 
by ' Sir* Cahir (VDoherty, and the burning of Culmore by 
his lieutenant, M*Davet, and when * a fortunate shot in the 
head' had ended the career of the young nobleman * of great 
hopes but few years,' a price was set upon the heads of his 
adherents. One of them, Donal a Billin, was hiding in this 
neighbourhood, and the reward for his head was his own iQhe- 
ritance. His brother-in-law, with whom he was concealed, 
contemplated his betrayal, and attempted to justify his treachery 
aud cupidity in obtaining the reward by saying if he would not 
some other would ; and, fortified by this, to him, convincing 
argument, severing all the ties of kindred, and tramjjling on 
the rites of hospitality, he decapitated the fugitive, and pro- 
ceeded with the head of his murdered kinsman to the English 
authorities, to claim the reward of his cruel perfidy. On his 

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94 INISHOWEN. 

way, having to stop at an inn for the night, he attempted to 
stifle the npbraidings of his seared and guilty conscience by a 
beastly indolgence in strong drink, and in the conrse of his 
carousal disclosed to the innkeeper the object of his jonmey. The 
innkeeper, acting on the good old principle that * he may take who 
has the power,' proceeded in the morning, while the mnrderer 
was sleeping off the drunken debauch of the previous night, 
with the head to the authorities, and claimed and received as 
the reward of his guesf s villainy the lands of Bashenny ; and 
when he had his title to them fully perfected, he gave the 
above-named point to the perfidious fratricide as his portion of 
the spoil. Let us now quit this sickening scene of treachery, 
and turn to our original stand point, a short distance from which, 
at the northern extremity of the Isle of Doagh, on a rock 
called Carrick-a-Brahe, or the Friar's Eock, are the ruins of an 
old castle built by one M'Fall.* Of this relic of bygone times 
nothing now remains but a square tower, about 30 feet high, 
the angles of which, with geometrical precision, point to the 
four cardinal points, and a few broken ruins, which prove that 
the structure was once more extensive. The view from this 
spot, on a fine evening, is singularly beautiful. Stretched out 
before you, like some immense living creature, its bosom con- 
stantly heaving as with the pulses of life, lies the broad surface 
of the Atlantic ocean. Far away as the eye can reach, like a 
dim cloud resting on the waters, is the Island of Tory ; nearer 
abruptly rises Glasshedy, with its emerald carpet of rich soft 
grass ; farther distant the bold cliffii of Binion frown up in 
brown stem majesty, between which and the green heights of 
Cruck Aughrim (the hill of triumph) the dark sharp form of 
Bulabin looms up in the background, the whole forming an out- 

* In A.D. 834 the monarch Niall Caille led an army into Leinster ; 
one of his oflBicers, Fearghus, son of Badhbhchadh, lord of Carraig- 
Brachaidhe, was slain by the Mnnstermen. Seghonnan, its lord, died 
in 858 ; Maelfabhaill, its lord, died in 878 ; Ruare, its lord, died in 907 ; 
in 915 jts chief fell fighting, with the monarch, Niall Glandubh, against 
the Danes ; in 1014 Cudnbh Ua Maelfabhaill, its chief, was slain by the 
Mnnstermen ; in 1053 its lord died ; in 1065 Maelfabhaill, its lord, was 
slain by O'Meith; in 1082 its lord died; in 1102 Sitrick Ua Mael- 
fabhaill, its lord, was. slain ; in 1166 Aedh. its lord, of same family, was 
slain by Niall Ua Lochlainn ; in 1198 Cathalan O'Mulfavil, its lord, was 
slain by O'Dearan, who was himself slain immediately afterwaids in 
revenge. This name is anglicised Mnlfaal, and sometimes Mac Paul. — 
Annals of the Four Masters* 

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CLONMANT. 95 



line at once singularly bold and attractive. At the eastern 
extremity of the miniature bay of Ballindabo stand two rocks, 
well worthy of the attention of the antiquarian and naturalist. 
They are about 40 feet high, and on the top of one of them, 
which is insulated by every tide, are the remains of a castle, 
built by Phelemy Breslaugh O'Doherty, for the purpose of pre- 
serving his infant son from the ravages of the smallpox, which 
at the time was desolating the locali*^y ; but for all his paternal 
care the child caught the epidemic and died. Although his 
measures had not the desired effect, Phelemy was surely right 
in having recourse to sanitary means in order to stem the plague. 
Through the centre of the other, from side to side, runs a 
fissure, about 40 feet in length, opening on the side next the 
water into a splendid lofty hall, capable of containing upwards 
of 100 persons ; the sides are smooth and polished as the most 
elegant furniture, and wrought into an endless variety of shapes 
from the action of the tide. The formation of this rock, the 
sandhills in the vicinity, and other circumstances, prove that 
the locality was at one time the scene of some grand natural 
convulsion or earthquake." 

Now, as to Strabreagy itself, it occupies a portion of what I 
have supposed to be the bed of the ancient deep, but its 
existence, as it now is, probably dates from the elevation of the 
land on the Culdaff coast, and the formation of the sand hills of 
PoUin. There is much reason to conjecture that its present in- 
let was formed by some sudden convulsion ; and there is a 
legend told respecting it, -yi^hich goes to show, if this species of 
evidence be admissible, that for some time at least afterwards 
the passage became stopped, and the bed of the gulf underwent 
some degree of reclamation. The story will commend itself to 
those who advocate its embankment a second time. Seriously, 
however, that project, far from being impossible, would, in our 
humble opinion, not be attended with any very serious en- 
gineering difficulties — ^with much less,- we are sure, than have 
been encountered elsewhere — ^while its completion would afford 
for agricultural purposes several thousands of acres of the 
richest land. 

Before commencing the legend of Strabreagy I must observe 
that the hills of Knockameny, Knockglass, Lag, and Gorey, and 
even the gulf of Strabreagy, were regarded, time out of mind, 
as fairy or gentle ground. The fairy King of that district, as 
well as of the lough, was NiaU-na-ard, or Neil of the Heights. 



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96 INISHOWBN. 



On the authority of a very ancient Irish tract, written in the 
shape of a dialogue between St. Patrick and Caoilte MacRonain, 
of which there are but two copies extant, one in the Bodleian 
Library, the other in the Book of Lismore, the original of which 
is in the possession of the Duke of Devonshire, and a copy in 
the Royal Irish Academy. Dr. O'Donovan infers that the 
sprites or fairies, with corporeal and material forms, but, as is 
supposed, indued with immortality, were Tuatha-De-Dananns, 
who lingered in the country for many centuries, after their sub- 
jugation by the Gaedhil, and that they lived in retired 
situations, where they practised abstruse arts. On account of 
their mechanical skill and their retired mode of life the 
Milesians came to regard them as supernatural beings. Some 
of the De-Danann chiefs who fell in battle fighting against the 
Milesians were afterwards deified : thus, Manannan was pro- 
moted to be the God of the Sea, and was surnamed Maxj Lir, or 
" son of the ocean." From Manannan, the Irish Neptune, the 
Isle of Man, or Inis-Manannan, takes its name. Through the 
haze and mists of departed centuries the name of Manannan 
comes roUing on our ear. Wishing to befriend three young 
men, whom he took under his special patronage, he entered 
into a compact with Niall-na-ard, who then resided in the hills 
of Knockameny, for his good will of the lough of Strabreagy, 
trusting to his own power over the deep to make it a safe 
place of residence for the young men. So says the legend. 
Wondering what use he could put it to, as it was of 'little 
service to himself, Niall gave it to him on easy terms. Ma- 
nannan went forthwith down to the mouth of the bar, the 
tide being out, and there planted three white osier rods. He 
then departed, no one knew where. The tide on its return, 
however, passed not the three rods planted by Manannan ; in a 
few days he returned with the young men, and put them in pos- 
session of this bit of territory, rescued, as it were, from his own 
dominions. The young men here built a splendid palace, and 
occupied their leisure hours in improving and beautifying their 
groimds. They succeeded so well that they excited the envy 
and cupiJlity of Niall-na-ard's. queen, who insisted that he 
should appropriate the castle and grounds to his own use. 
Niall easily yielded to the covetous demands of his wife ; he 
turned the three young strangers adrift, and gathering his own 
retainers and dependants to the ill-gotten castle, there held high 
carnival. He did not long enjoy the fruits of his perfidy. The 

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OLONMANT. 97 



young men returned to Manannan, and told him how they had 
been dealt with by Niall." Manannan mounted his famous 
courser, and was next morning galloping swiftly past the castle ; 
he came from the bar mouth, had with him in his hand the 
three " sally rods," and at his horse's heels came rolling fiercely 
the green waves of the ocean. As he passed the castle, he 
raised his hand in threatening attitude, and addressing Niall- 
na-ard, said — " For that lie which you imposed upon me, this 
place shall henceforth be called Tra-na-brega." He galloped 
round the former limits of the lough, submerging the castle and 
estate. Thus was formed what to this day is known as Stra- 
breagy, or the lying strand. 

We may mention that at BaJlymagehan, in the Isle of Doagh, 
there is an acient burying-ground, and mass used to be cele- 
brated here in the olden time. Leaving the Isle (which, by 
the way, is really a peninsula) by the same way we entered it, 
and taking the road to Donagh, we soon arrive at the hamlet of 
Rasheney, where there is a handsome National School, sur- 
rounded by shady trees, with a residence for the master adjoin- 
ing. A few minutes' drive brings us to the base of Cruckna- 
galcosh, which, in former times, was likewise a stronghold of 
the fairies. Here a fairy princess, remarkable for the whiteness 
of her feet, presided at many a joyous meeting, and was on 
many evenings, and in the bright moonlight, seen to mingle in 
the dance, with her attendants, to the sound of the most ex- - 
quisite music, generally that of the violin. A bootmaker, 
named Shane M*Cool, lived in the neighbourhood, and, in the 
exercise of his professional duties, his way often led across 
Crucknagalcosh, for in those times rural artizans migrated from 
one customer's house to another, where a job awaited them, and 
where they stopped and boarded while executing it. At length 
a noble lady in the train of the princess became enamoured of 
Shane, and day by day her love increased. A secret council 
was held by the fairy authorities, at which it was resolved to 
second the lady's designs, and to capture the bootmaker. But 
Shane had a friend among them who appeared to him, and not 
only privately disclosed the resolutions of the council, but like- 
wise instructed him to contend with his adversary, and come off 
victorious in the struggle. Thus we see that secret associations 
even of the fairies, were not proof against the betrayer ; there 
itself there was a " Sham Squire" or a Jemmy O'Brien ever 
ready to sell the pass. The next time Shane crossed the hill, 

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98 INISHOWEN. 



being accoutred with the implements of his trade, he beheld the 
fairy contingent along a narrow glen, formed by the mountam 
torrent. His instructions were not to retreat, and if he struck 
to strike but once only ; for a fairy who gets one effectual stab 
is as vulnerable as any mortal, but give it another and forth- 
with it is cured. His admirer sat on a huge stone, just where 
Shane was to cross the brook, and on his approach rose to seize 
him, wlien he, drawing his knife, like his prototype, Fingal, 
when contending with the spirit of Loda, stabbed her to the 
heart. " Strike again," cried all the fairies. " Enough,'' said 
Shane, whereupon there arose from the whole multitude a 
dismal wail, in which they recounted the genealogy of the de- 
ceased lady, her descent from kings and knights, and the mis- 
fortune of having her thus murdered by "Shane Gibbagh 
M^Cool." 

Very soon after the fall of O'Doherty the Established Church 
was introduced, for we find by the Ulster Visitation Book that 
in 1622 John Sterne, A.M., was minister of Clonmany. In 
1655 the parish minister was John Bunbury, as stated by a 
record in the State Paper Office, Dublin Castle. His salary 
was £50, which was equal in value to £500 at the present 
time. 



Chapter XI. 
Dona^h, 

Continuing our journey we soon arrive at Straths Bridge, 
where we will halt for a very short time. On the rising ground 
opposite to us is the hamlet of Camdough. We can only see 
one of the comfortable farm houses from this point ; it is that 
of Mr. William Campbell, and the very one to which I would 
direct attention. The grandfather of the present owner occu- 
pied the same place, and at the time there was little toleration 
for Catholic priests or bishops in these parts, but for one of them, 
at least, the house of the good Joseph Campbell afforded a safe 
retreat The fugitive was Bishop M'Colgan, of whom we shall 
speak more at length hereafter. His lordship was for some time 
sheltered by Joseph Campbell in his corn-kiln, but his where- 
abouts was soon made known, and that too by a Catholic. But 
the traitor was not destined to earn the reward, for a neighbour, 
who discovered what he was about, fortunately frustrated his 
design. 

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DONAQH. 99 



It was a fine evening in early spring. In yonder field, which 
runneth from the garden wall down to the river, Joseph Camp- 
bell was busily engaged in ploughing up the soil. He perceived 
a man crossing the bridge, and running towards him with 
breathless haste. On his arrival he knew him well, for he lived 
in this neighbourhood. He told Mr. Campbell, as hastily as 
he could, that he had Bishop M^Colgan concealed, that denial 
now was useless, and that if he did not quickly fly he would 
surely be apprehended ; adding at the same time the name of 
the party who was intent on committing the evil deed. Camp- 
bell saw that all was pretty well understood ; he unyoked his 
horses, placed his lordship on one, while he himself rode upon 
another, and taking the Clonmany road, stopped not till they 
were in Leenankeel. Here the bishop took a boat and got in 
safety to Fannet. They were not an hour gone when the mili- 
tary arrived in Carndough, and going to the kiln they found, 
as they themselves termed it, " the nest there, but the bird was 
gone." To his charitable and humane behaviour in concealing 
the bishop, and finally preserving his liberty, if not his life, by 
assisting him to eff'ect his escape, the peasantry have been in 
the habit of attributing the prosperity which blessed Joseph 
Campbell and his representatives to the present time. But we 
must hasten on, passing Glassalts National School, which nestles 
quietly in Primrose Vale, Fairview, once the seat of pleasure 
and festivity, now silent as the grave, and the Rectory, flanked 
by tall sheltering elms, and surrounded by a well-improved 
farm, the residence of the respected parish minister, the Rev. 
N. Columbine Martin. In that house was born Tristram 
Kennedy, Esq., M.P., the talented and enlightened representa- 
tive of the county of Louth. His father was rector liere. His 
successor was the Rev. George Marshall, whose sons, George, 
James, Bristow, and Hill, so much distinguished themselves in 
the civil and military service of their country in India and 
China ; and whose daughter, Honora, was married to the illus- 
trious Sir Henry Lawrence, of Indian renown. A little onward, 
on the densely wooded slopes of Crucknacoilledare, we have, as 
already remarked, a specimen of the primitive Irish forests. I 
think there is scarcely anything which could afford more true 
delight to the ear than the melody of the feathered songsters, 
of these groves on an early summer morning. 

*' The blackbird whistles from the thorny brake ; 
The mellow bullfinch answers from the grove ; 

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100 INISHOWEN. 



Nor are the linnets, o^er the flowering farze 
Pour'd out profusely silent. Join'd to these, 
Innumerous songsters, in the freshening shade 
Of new spring leaves, their modulations mix 
Mellifluous. The jay, the rook, the daw. 
And each harsh pipe, discordant heard alone. 
Aid the full concert : while the stock dove breailies 
A melancholy murmur through the whole." 

Thompson. 

To the left of the road is the landlord's pretty mansion, amid 
a profusion of tall, venerable oak, ash, and elm trees, with its 
extensive lawn, parks, and pond. This is the seat of S. 
Bankin, Esq. 

** Should I my steps turn to the rural seat 

Whose lofty elms and venerable oaks 

Invite the rook ; who, high amid the boughs, 

In early spring, his airy castle builds. 

And ceaseless caws amusive ; there well pleased, 

I might the various polity survey 

Of the mixt household kind. The careful hen 

Calls all her chirping family around, 

Fed and defended by the fearless cock, 

Whose breast with ardour flames, as on he walks, 

Grraceful, and crows defiance. In the pond 

The finely-checker'd duck before her train 

Bows garrulous. The stately sailing swan 

Gives out his snowy plumage to the gale ; 

And arching proud his neck, with oary feet 

Bears forward fierce, and guards his osier-isle, 

The turkey nigh, 
Loud-threatening, reddens ; while the peacock 
Spreads his every-coloured glory to the sun, 
Aiid swims in radiant majesty idong." 

Thompson's Spsinq. 

The above graphic extract is strictly applicable to the spot 
before ns. We will now try to ascend this steep bill on the 
road. Indeed, 'tis a wonder that now in this age of improve- 
ment such a towering eminence on the public highway is not 
removed. After getting to the top of it, you will probably be 
panting, so, whUe you stand to draw your breath, turn to the 
west and look sharply into yonder glade in the wood. Benealji 
those waving oaks, though you canpot see it, is a massive stone, 
four feet high and three broad, of smooth surface, naturally en- 
cased in the bank. Here, when the priest and his flock dare 
no longer appear in a temple made by hands, they were accus- 
tomed to meet on Sundays ; and on that mural altar was offered 
the oblation of the Mass. 

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DOKAGH. 101 



" Oft hath the holy wine and bread 

Been blest beneath thy mnrmnring tent, 

Where many a bright and hoary head 

Bowed at that awfnl sacrament ; 

Now all beneath the turf are laid, 

Who here had sat, and sang, and pray'd.'* * 

WiLBOH. 

There is a cross cut upon this altar ; its top is overgrown 
with heather, a stunted oak grows beside it, and a holly bush 
overhangs it. When mass was offered here it was partially 
sheltered by a large branching oak ; in time of storm starves 
taken from the crowd and covered with overcoats sheltered the 
altar, and afforded a protection for the sacrifice. The stones 
that formed the base are now for the most part displaced ; in- 
deed, some of them were drawn away by a Catholic in the 
neighbourhood, to be used as building stones, when the late 
Robert Carey, Esq., of Tiemaleague, hearing of it, did, to his 
great credit, put an immediate stop to the prosecution of this 
act of thoughtless Vandalism. At Barrack- Hill, in Cam- 
donagh, there was another of these little altars, and a third one 
at or near the place where Owen Doherty's house now stands on 
Glenmakee Hill. When on this subject I may here state that 
the small Chapel first erected in' Camdonagh was built about 
80 years ago by Bean O'Bonnell. It was the fourth built in 
the barony. 

We have now arrived near the centre of the parish of 
Donagh ; its hills and plains, and glens and rivers are before 
us. At Cam the principal thoroughfares of the barony inter- 
sect each other, and radiate from that point. The mountains, 
the highest of which is Slieve Snaght, consist of whinstone, 
trap, and schist rocks, but clay-slate, flagstones, and ranges of 
blue limestone, are found among them. Veins of silver exist 
among the quartz at Carrowmore, in Glentogher. These silver 
mines were worked by an English company in 1790, and again 
in 1855, but abandoned secondly after considerable progress 
had been made. 

The area of the whole parish is 25,259 acres, but much of 
this is irreclaimable mountain land, unfit for ciQtivation. In 
the low grounds are some extensive tracts of bog land, but the 
bog is speedily disappearing under the demand for fuel, and 
much of the ground from which it has been cut away is being 
converted into good land. Underneath these bogs are large 
quantities of timber ; larch-fir, oak, and sometimes yew are 

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102 IKISHOWEN. 



found in a good state of preservation. The population in 1861 
was 4,474. 

There is no point on any side of it from which the vast pro- 
portions of SJieve Snaght can be viewed so advantageously as at 
Mullinabantra, on the ridge which separates Glentogher from 
Glenagannon. To this place we will then proceed. We notice 
at Churchtown a very neat house, lately erected by M. C. 
Bankin, Esq., attached to which is an improved and well 
fenced and sheltered farm ; beyond this is a subdivision of the 
old townland of Magheramore, now known as Longfield, or 
Magherafoda, which, passing, we soon arrive at the Derry road. 
From this road, nearly at the Mullin bridge, the way to this 
place leads off along the slope of Ballyloskey hill. When the 
traveller places himself on the limestone knoll which occupies 
the summit of this comparatively unfrequented spot, he will not 
fail to be impressed with feelings of pleasure and amazement 
while he surveys the landscape there presented to his view. 

** There is a voiceless eloquence in earth, 
Telling of him who gave her wonders birth ; 
And long may I remain the adoring child 
Of nature's majesty, sublime or wild ; 
Hill, flood, and forest, mountain, rock and sea. 
All take their terrors and their charms from thee — 
From thee, whose hidden but supreme control 
Moves through the world a universal soul." 

MONTOOMERT. 

As the plan which I have designed for myself will not permit 
me to enter into a full delineation of the varied scenery around, 
I will, therefore, glance only at the most prominent objects of 
interest. First, then, lying deep below us is the narrow valley 
of Glentogher, hemmed in by hills, and nearly three miles in 
length, with fields and farm houses, and sheep pasturage amid 
the crags on each side of the river. 

" That narrow vale which winds 
^mong the hills is erey with rocks that peer 
Above its shallow soil ; the mountain side 
With loose stones bestrewn, which oftentimes 
Sliding beneath the foot of straggling goat 
Clattered adown the steep." . 

Several bridges span the river to afford the people of the op- 
jwsite side access to the road. Opposite one of these is the 
National School, where the children of the glen are educated. 
Rising far above us is the blue peak of Crunleigh, and over 
against it is craggy Trosk; then in succession are the two 

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DONAGH. 103 



** Tullys," which occupy the foreground of SUeve-Snaght, and 
behind them rise the huge shoulders and conical peak of that 
great monarch, sharply and clearly defined against the western 
sky. On the north aide it declines in a series of stairs or ter- 
raceSy which terminate at Gregacattin, on the Buncrana road, 
the regularity of whose gradations are from this point beauti- 
fully apparent. Between those twin brothers, the " Tullys," a 
rapid brook runs directly down to the main river at Oashel, and 
on the line of this brook, through the opening in the hills, the 
best view can be had of that towering elevation of 2,200 feet 
and more. The aides of the mountain, though steep, are neither 
bare nor craggy, but covered with a thick coat of short pur|^ 
heath, interspersed with patches of grass, and throughout the 
summer months it affords excellent sheep pasturage. Indeed 
the mutton raised here is said to be peculiarly excellent and 
sweet flavoured. It is called the snowy mountain, because tho 
snows lie longer on it than on any of the others around. Some 
years ago a patch lay on it from one winter to the next. The 
heavy snows of January, 1867, will probably leave their im- 
press on its brows for a long time. 

From this stand-point we can also see Bulliba, in Clonmany ; 
nearer, the Giblan mountains, one of which presents a curious 
configuration, inasmuch that it appears quite globular and ever 
ready to tumble into the briny deep. Nearer still is Glenmakee 
mountain and the green slopes of Oregnahoma, running down 
to the glen, which is a spot of rare and excelling beauty. On 
the north, as far as the eye can carry, we see the black moim- 
tain of Malin ; on and onward to the sea, lake-like Strabreagy, 
Culdaff Bay, and the wooded heights of Carthage and Port Bed- 
ford, the emerald clad Cruck Aughram, and last, though not 
least, Cruckroosky, which we think we can nearly touch with 
our extended hand; not so, however, for a great portion of 
Glenagannon lies between. But I shall have to speak of this 
glen more at length when I come to trace the districts remark- 
able for private distillation. 

The place whereon we stand used to be accounted a favourite 
haunt of the fairies or gentry, Micky Gill, who professed 
himself a medium between mortality and the spiritual world, 
used frequently to meet troops of them here, and join with 
them in the most exhiliarating pastime. Micky was not ctf 
great stature himself, but among these respected beings he 
seemed a giant He and they were once seen disporting here^ 

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104 INISHOWEK. 



but when the person who noticed them came forward, the fairies 
had all vanished, and Micky was alone. An explanation wa» 
demanded, but all that Micky could be got to say was that hi» 
companions were little boys, who went just into the rock there. 
This Micky lived at Cashel, and used to tell his neighbours, when 
their cattle were missing, that he assisted in their seizure by 
the gentry. He at last disappeared rather mysteriously, and 
fame had it that it was his adopted friends who wafted him off 
from the cares and miseries of earth. 

We will now proceed to Cam, and discourse by the way. 
The living in this parish is a rectory, in the patronage of the 
Marquis of Donegall ; tithes, i£269. The glebe, on which the 
rector's house is situate, contains 162 Cunningham acres. There 
is a Presbyteiian Meetinghouse in connexion with the General 
Assembly, at Hill-head, and adjoining it a Manse has been 
lately erected for the clergyman. The principal seats are Tier- 
naleague. The Rectory, Fairview,. Bridge Cottage, Holly mount, 
Gransha, Whitefield, and Cloaghan House. There are National 
Schools at Glentogher, Craigtown, Glassalts, and Camdonagh, 
(male and female) named St. Patrick's. There are eight mills 
in the parish — two for cloth, three for flax, and three corn 
mills. The occupations of the people are chiefly agricultural, 
and some progress is being made in improved husbandry, under 
the auspices of a local farming society. But in farming there 
is still great room for improvement as regards drainage, rota- 
tion of crops, the rearing and feeding of stock, &c. As a 
remedy, I think the friends of agriculture should endeavour to 
have it taught practically, and then farming, in the next gene- 
ration at least, would be skilfully performed. It is all very 
well to have our youth taught reading, writing, and arithmetic, 
but with this amount of education we should not rest satisfied, 
for, as most of them must depend on the cultivation of the soil 
for their support through life, it is obvious that in this, as in 
every other branch of industry, they should be properly trained 
and instructed. Long established habits are hard to be over- 
come, and the work of improvement progresses slowly. 

Sixty years ago, however, farming was in a more backward 
condition than at present ; farm implements were almost nil ; 
the plough then in use was a light wooden thing, which a boy 
of eighteen could fix on one shoulder and carry from townland 
to townland ; the harrow was also of wood, even the pins or 
teeth, while carts or wheeled vehicles had scarcely any existence 

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DONAQH. 105 



at all. Any improved implement, when first introduced, wa» 
looked upon with a jealous eye, and regarded as an inroad on 
chartered customs. About this time there lived in the vicinity 
of Camdonagh a farmer, whom we shall call Mr. Wren. H« 
was of English descent, and, as it was whispered, of the family 
of the great architect of St. Paul's, or even a distant relation 
of Royalty itself. Well, Mr. Wren imported a new plough, a 
solid wooden one, well painted, with improved muzzle and cast 
iron plate for mould hoard. The merits of this plough became 
the sole theme of conversation in the neighbourhood. All the 
farmers came to inspect it. Of the number was Sandy Faraday. 
The day on which he came Mr. Wren was at home, and his 
ploughman at work. Sandy inspected the plough minutely, 
opened a furrow with it, and bepraised the good taste and en- 
terprise of the owner as much as Mr. Wren could desire, who, 
to do him justice, was open to a considerable amount of 
judicious flattery, as which of us is not ? 

He pronounced it a "bra plu," and declared "she would 
split a hailstane." 

The inspection over they retired to the cottage to discuss the 
prospects of improved agriculture over a pot of Mr. Wren's 
home brewed. While the latter was filling the beverage, he 
managed to intermix Sandy's beer liberally with stout Intshowen^ 
which he called putting a stick in it, for the purpose of hear- 
ing him bestowing his praise, at which he appeared an adept. 

Sandy partook of his beer with great gusto, remarking " 'tis 
yersel, Mr. Wren, that keeps the gid small beer, lang life to 
ye ; this is nane o' Cam splash ; here's to the new plu." 

On his way home Sandy called at the smiddy, where a 
number of rustics were assembled in busy confab regarding the 
same said plough. 

" Boys," said he, " I ha' just been to see that plu." 

" Have ye, have ye, Faraday," they exclaimed. "And whaf a 
yer opinion of her ?" 

" Och, what of her," returned Sandy, ^* She's only a figaire" — 
a painted toy. 

His judgment was highly satisfactory to the auditory, and 
was received with a burst of applause ; and thus the astute 
Faraday pleased and laughed at each party in turn. 

We are now in sight of Carn. There is the old military 
barrack perched high above it, still seeming to sentinel all 
around. The large edifice on our right, which we are now passing 

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106 IKI8H0WBK. 

is the Convent building and schoolrooms of Mount St. Maiy, 
lately erected through the exertions of the present respected 
parish priest, at a cost of JS 1,300, but not yet in operation. 
The Convent building occupies a beautiful site, and not only 
Qommands a view of the surrounding country, and of the 
waters of the ocean, but, from it on a clear day, beyond the 
Bay of Culdaff, may be seen the hills of Jura, on the Scottish 
coast. 

Next, on our left is the Union Workhouse, with accommo- 
dations for 650 paupers, and fever hospital adapted for 50 
patients. These buildings, being so like others of their kind, 
require no particular description here. 

The town of Oarndonagh is situated about the centre of the 
barony, at a distance of 20 miles from Deny, 10 from Bun- 
crana, and 12 from Moville. 

It consists of a square and four streets, and moat oi the 
houses are large, new, and substantially built. A great many 
of the old buildings have been remo\red by the occupiers, and 
better ones erected in their stead ; and this work of improve- 
ment is .still steadily progressing. A portion of the interior of 
Uie square is occupied by a large structure, of rath)er ungainly 
aspect, serving the purposes of a weigh-house and Sessions 
House, but impairing considerably the general appearance of the 
town» The population was 645 in 1861. The markets, which 
are held on Mondays, for the sale of cattle, pigs, horses, grain, 
flax, potatoes, and agricultural produce generally, are, on ac- 
count of the central position of the town, well attended, and a 
great deal of business transacted. Besides these, fairs are held 
on the 21st of February, May, August, and November, and an 
extraordinary market on the day after Christmas. The Nor- 
thern Banking Company have a branch Bank here. The town 
is the head-quarters of a Constabulary district, and petty ses- 
sions are held in it monthly, and i:oad sessions twice in the 
year. There are likewise the usual public institutions, such as 
a post-office, with savings bank, dispensary, and a loan fund, 
which is adjacent to the town. It contains many good shops ; 
there are two shirt factories, a hotel, two bakeries in operation, 
and two more in course of erection. There are twenty-three 
houses licensed in it for the sale of spirituous liquors, two of 
these being wholesale as well as retail establishments. The 
town is the entrepot and principal place of business for at least 
200 square miles of the surrounding country ; the number of 

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DONAQH. 107 



public houses, therefore, is not too great for the wauts of the 
place, though some, who erroneously base their calculations on 
the population of the town only, assert the contrary. The 
population of the town is evidently no criterion whereby to test 
this matter. Were their wants only to be consulted, few, in- 
deed, would be the number of public houses required, for the 
people are generally sober, industrious, and economical. But, 
as a public question, licensing ]|as lately grown into notoriety 
and importance ; some, regarding every licensed house as an 
evil, are using their " little brief authority" in waging a cru- 
sade against them — suppressing some, and busying themselves 
in opposing the applications of others, especially of all new ap- 
plicants, no matter how unimpeachable their character. Such 
views are not only discouraging to trade, but also unsound. 
By them, too, shebeen houses are directly encouraged, every one 
of which is a positive evil. Let there be no favour ia dispen- 
sing the privileges of the law — no monopolies — let it be the 
rule to gi;ant these licenses, the exception to refuse ; and as to 
the whole number of such houses necessary in the country, it 
will regularly and steadily adjust itself, without ofl&cial non- 
sense, by the unerring operations of the law of demand and 
supply. 

The Eoman Catholic Chapel is also situated here. It is a 
large and spacious edifice, erected at an outlay of £1,200. A 
tablet, which is affixed to the exterior, informs us that this 
took place in 1826, " through the unexampled exertions of the 
Rev. James Quinn, pastor." Mr. Quinn's remains are interred 
here, and the tablet in question was prepared and placed in its 
present situation by his successor. 

There is a male and female National School adjoining the 
chapel, and under the management of the parish priest; in 
another part of the town is a school belonging to the Wesleyans. 
Besides the two National Schools above referred to. Rev. Mr. 
Quinn likewise built two of the other National Schools of the 
parish. 

We have here to state that John Colgau, the learned com- 
piler of the " Acta Sanctorum Hiberniae," or Lives of the Saints 
of Ireland, was born in Glentogher, in the parish of Donagh. 
Of his birthplace he himself says : — Natus apud radices 
niveae montis. He became a Franciscan monk, and com- 
pleted his studies in the College of St. Anthony, in Louvain. 
He succeeded the celebrated Hugh Ward, also a county of 

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108 INISHOWBN. 



Donegal man, in his office as lector of divinitj, and bis laboiiotus 
aiitiquarian pursuits. Colgan was deeply versed in the lan- 
guage and antiquities of his country. He contemplated, even 
before his departure from Ireland, a revision of the national 
records, especially that portion of them which embraced the 
hagiology of his illustrious forefathers. An opportunity for 
this was now afforded him^ On the death of Ward, in 1635, 
the piles of manuscripts whicK. that great man had in his pos- 
session, as well as those which had been collected by O'Cler j 
and Fleming, were all carefuUy committed to the management 
of John Colgan* 

With these materials Colgan proceeds to put his religious and 
iKoble designs into execution. Agreeably to his original intenr 
tion, he proposed to publish a general synopsis of the ecclesiasti- 
cal antiquities of Ireland; secondly, the acts of SS. Patrick, 
Brigid, and Coltmibkille ; and thirdly, the acts of all the other 
saints of Ireland. 

This last work he proposed to divide into four parts, eacE 
part comprising the festivals and hagiology for three months. 
He only lived to see the first of these parts — which contained 
two volumes — ^published. It appeared in 1645. The remain- 
ing parts, enriched with notes, critical and topographical, and 
with large and complete tables, had been prepared for the 
press, when the death of the author prevented their publication. 

The " Acta Sanctorum" is very rare ; only a few copies of it 
exist now in all Ireland. The late Rev. Daniel Doherty, of 
Cappagh, possessed a copy ; the celebrated Dr. Beeves has one ; 
there is one in Trinity College. The average price is from £20 
to £30. In the Messrs. Bichardson's catalogue it is marked 
at £20. 

In 1647 Colgan completed his favourite hagiology of the 
three principal patron saints of Ireland. In this work, which 
consisted of two exceedin^y large volumes, the author presents 
seven lives of . St, Patrick, five of St. Columba, and six of St. 
Brigid. The unwearied research of this eminent man has con- 
tributed to shed a new ray of light on the sacred antiquities of 
his country. John Colgan died at Lou vain in the year 1658. 
Besides the works mentioned he published some others, and 
after his death several piles of his manuscripts remained at 
Louvain. It does not appear that any of these had been pub- 
lished ; they may, however, be considered as invaluable me- 
morials of tiie deep research of this learned antiquarian. 



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SONAOH. 109 



Glentogher was likewise the birthplace of the Bev. John 
McLaughlin, parish priest of Ballinascreen in the year 1785. 
Mr. McLaughlin was eminently skilled in the Irish language. 
He studied at the Irish College, Paris, and during his residence 
there was many years employed, by order of the Dublin Society, 
or some other public body, with transcribing a part of th« 
cc Book of Lecan^' from a copy in the Boyal Library. He was 
appointed first professor of the Irish language at Maynooth, but 
declined the offer. He died on the 28th of October, 1813. 

In placing before the reader some account of the great and 
good, whose learning, virtues, or patriotism have conferred im- 
peridiable lustre on the fine old barony, it affords me much 
pleasure to record the following sketch of the life of the late 
Rev. Patrick Kearney, of Camdonagh. It is taken, by per- 
mission of the writer, from the Ulster Observer of June 9th, 
1864 :— 

" Father Kearney was bom among the grey mountains of 
Donegal, in the classical peninsula of Ennishowen. His early 
years were spent under the shadow of Slieve Snaght, at the base 
of which the learned author of the * Acta Sanctorum,' John 
Colgan, was born. His youthful mind was stored with the 
religions traditions and the historical reminiscences of the good 
old barony. Father Kearney was born at Camdonagh, on 10th 
November, 1831. His mother was an O'Dogherty, a descend- 
ant of the good old sept that once reigned supreme in the good 
old barony. Father Kearney entered the College of Maynooth 
on the 25th of August, 1646, he being one of five students 
who had been selected by the late lamented Dr. Maginn a short 
time after his elevation to the episcopacy. Of these five two. 
Fathers Keamey and Campbell, joined the order of the Yincen- 
tians, at Castleknock ; a third, Father Flanagan, went out as a 
missionary to Trinidad, and two remained in the diocese of 
Derry— one, the Rev. James M'Closkey, as curate in Dungiven, 
and the other, the Rev. James McLaughlin, in Camdonagh. 
It was often remarked in Maynooth that it was quite an unusual 
thing for such a number of distinguished students to enter 
Maynooth at the same time and from the same diocese. At the 
time Father Kearney entered college he had not attained his 
fifteenth year. Father Flanagan, another of the Derry students 
who entered the same class, appeared even younger, though he 
was older by a few months. When these two candidates pre- 
sented themselves for dxaminatioD, the President, the Me 

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110 INISHOWEN. 



Very Rev. Dr. Renahan, was so struck by their youthful ap- 
pearance, that he remarked, ' Why, Dr. Maginn must surely 
look on Maynooth 'as a nursery for little boys.' It soon 
appeared, however, how prudent and discriminating the great 
prelate was in the selection of his candidates ; for, from the 
very beginning of his collegiate career. Father Kearney gave 
most unmistakeable proofs of a strong, vigorous mind, and of 
abilities far above those of the ordinary class of students. His 
career in college was long and brilliant. He was always among 
the first in his class. 

" At the end of eight years he entered on the Dunboyu© 
Establishment, where he also obtained the very highest honours. 
At one time he was adjudicated the solus, or prize essay, having 
obtained a similar honour in the class of Belles Lettres, For a 
short time he discharged the duties of professor. He was 
specially ordained to act as dean on the 13 th of December, 
1855. He remained in Maynooth till July, 1856, when he 
joined the Fathers of the Congregation of the Missions at 
Castleknock, near Dublin. He spent his noviciate at Paris, in 
the house of the Order Rue de Seville, Here it was that the 
symptoms of that fatal malady under which he suffered for so 
long a time, and to which he fell a victim in the end, began to 
manifest themselves. He revisited his native barony for change 
of air, and returned again to Castleknock much improved. 
Some three years ago, when the Most Rev. Dr. Dixon handed 
over his Diocesan Seminary at Armagh to the Vincentian 
Fathers, Father Kearney was appointed to act as principal of 
the establishment. And the eiid proved how prudent was the 
choice. 

" His vocation was for a college or religious life — for the 
quietness and peace, for the opportunities of devotion, for the 
gradual formation of young minds, for the literary leisure which 
a place of education afforded him. During the short term of 
his management of the seminary at Armagh the number of 
students increased in a most wonderful proportion, and the 
institution acquired a name and a status which it is likely to 
retain for a long time to come. The duties of principal were, 
however, too much for Father Kearney's weak constitution and 
his shattered health. He was obliged to leave Armagh and 
revisit again the scenes of his early life — ^to try the effects of 
his native air. He remained at home for many months, and 
returned again in August last to Castleknock, where he calmly 



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DONAOH. Ill 

breathed his last, surrounded by the Fathers of the Order, on 
the evening of the 22nd of last month. 

" Poor Father Kearney ! Peace to his soul ! His labours 
and his pains are now all over. His body sleeps at Castleknock, 
in the little churchyard of the Order, and under the shadow of 
the ivy-clad ruins of the old castle. The green grass will soon 
cover his grave, and a simple stone cross, recording his age and 
the time of his death and birth, will be all that will be seen 
by the eye of the devout pilgrim who will visit his grave, but 
the influence of his good example, and the memory of his 
learning and of his many virtues will long remain. There 
was nothing fitful, nothing pretentious in the character of 
Father Kearney. He was ever one and the same— ever simple, 
single-minded, blameless, modest, and true. ' His was a dis- 
criminating judgment, which enabled him to cultivate human 
learning, so that it did not encroach on the time and interest 
due to sacred studies, and so to consecrate himself to the 
inward life as to cultivate caref uUy * whatever is lovely, what- 
ever is of good fame.' He was a pleasing speaker and an 
elegant writer, with a natural playfulness of thought and 
manner which made him dear to his friends and agreeable to 
all. The spirit of evangelical charity shone through the whole 
man, and made his gentleness and refinement appear what they 
really were — a growth from that pure harmony of soul which 
is a supernatural gift." 

The parish priests (^ Donagh for the last century were, first, 
the Rev. John M^Colgan, born in Cregamullen, a nephew of 
the Bishop, and brother of Thomas, the Latin teacher. He 
retired, from bad health, to Cregamullen, and received a small 
yearly allowance from the parish. He was buried in Cloncha. 
He was succeeded by the Rev. Michael M'Colgan, a native of 
Priesttown, in this parish. This town was formerly called 
Muff, but since his time it has been called Priesttown. He was 
parish priest for about six years, and is buried in the west end 
of Donagh church-yard, in the family burying-ground, where 
he had erected a monument over the remains of his father and 
brother. The inscription runs thus : — 
«L H. S." 

" S.H.M.D. ora pro nobis. Pater de coelis Deus misecere 
nobis. Onmes sancti angelis et archangelis orate pro nobis. 
O.M.M. et V. intercedite pro nobis. This monument was 
erected by the Rev. Michael Colgan, for his father, Roger, who 

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112 INISHOWBN. 



dieparted' this life January 15th, 1778, aged 65. Also, his 
son Philip. l"his is for his own posterity. T?his stone was 
erected 1783." 

We may observe the Latin is not quite grammalicaL A few- 
years after the good priest was buried in the same grave, but 
no one has taken the trouble to note the time of his death, or 
have it inscribed on the tomb. He was the last priest of an 
honoured name who shed lustre on the diocese of Deny, and 
ministered to the wants of the people during the dark days of 
the penal times. 

Father Cblgan attended Meentaghs as \rell'as Dons^h, where 
mass was then celebrated on alternate Sundfekys. He was suc- 
ceeded by Daan O'Donnell, who likew^ise attended to Bun- 
craiia. He \^as parish priest about four years, amd, as before 
stated, built the chapel at Camdonagh. He wias succeeded by 
the Rev. Mr. Diamond, of the County Derry, who lived where 
Bridge Cottage now stands, and completed the Chapel. He re- 
mained here only about five or six years, and was transferred 
to another parish. His successor was the Bev. John Maginn, 
who lived at Bridge Cottage also, and wias.only about four 
years here when he exchanged for Buncrana. His successor 
was the Rev. Mr. Gallagher, who lived in BaUylosky and in 

• the town of Carn. He died in. the parish. His successor was 
the Rev. Mr, 0'E!ane, called " White Kane," a native of County 
Derry ; he lived in Glentogher, and exchanged for Donagheady. 
He was succeeded by the Rev. James O'Connor, who lived in 
Glentogher, and exchanged for Culdaff about the yedr 1825. 
He was succeeded by the Rev. James Quinn, a native of the 
County Derry, who built the present chapel and four Natiomal 
Schools, to the erection of which he himself contributed l^iree 
or four hundred pounds. He died in Carrick on the 24th of 
April, 1838, and is buried in the chapel graveyard. He was 
succeeded by the Very Rev. William M*CaflEerty, Dean, who 
died in Priestown in 1856, and is buried inside the chapel. 
He was succeeded by the Rev. Paul Bradley, the present parish 

• priest. 

Before taking our departure from Camdonagh we will make 
a short visit to the old graveyard at the Protestant Church. 
As' the redder is aware this is the famous spot previously 
spoken of in connexion with the institution of Christianity in 
InishowsiL. Crossing the bridge, on the left is Bridge Cottage, 
the nudd&u^ of J. N. Thompson^ Esq., J.P.^ surrounded with 

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DOKAGH. 113 

a profusion of tall shady trees; beyond, at the distance of 
about one-eighth of a mile, and near the base of Crucknacoille- 
dare, we see Carriok, the pretty residenee of Captain Penfold, 
'RJ^. That neat little garden before the door is pleasing to 
behold in the summer months. Bows of fruit trees and well- 
arranged beds, stocked with a profusion of pretty flowers, giv^e 
evidence of the proprietor's refined taste. That handsome 
modern edifice to our left is the residence of Mr. B. Moore. 
It is shaded by the giant ash trees around the old churchyard. 
We have now got to the brow of the gentle but commanding 
eminence on which the venerable building stands. This very 
handsome dwelling near the gate is ** The Cottage," the resi- 
dence of the Bev. James M'Laughlin, C.C. In their season 
rich flowers are carefully cultivated around the door, and the 
walls are tastefully festooned with roses and honeysuckle; 
moreover, the site on which it stands commands a most exten- 
sive and picturesque view of the adjacent country and of 
the distant mountains, as before referred to in treathig of the 
site of the church. 

We enter the churchyard, and probably the old bell is 
tolling above our heads. That bell has its history. It was 
cast in Italy ; it was the old Catholic bell, and it bears on it 
this inscription — "Sancta Maria, Ora pro nobis." In this 
churchyard are many curious monuments, well worthy the 
attention of learned antiquarians. There is one most remark- 
able one. It is opposite the south sidewall, and not far from 
the corner of the chur^. It appears to be of very remote 
antiquity, probably of the fifth or sixth centuiy. It is most 
likely the oldest Christian monument in the North of Ireland, 
and was probably set here before the Boman alphabet was used 
in Ireland, as there are no characters upon it. It is 3^ feet 
long, 11 inches broad,, and a foot thick. The figures are alle- 
gorical. There is a bishop, with pastoral Qtaff, and a monster 
springing up to devour him. Behind this are two angels 
carrying a cross surmounted by a crown. The next figure ap- 
pears to be a round tower, and, after this, there is an Iri^h 
crp^s, with four points deeply indented in the circle. 

The other large cross, with its elaborate scroll work, whicfi 
stands outside the walls, and before referred to, i^ probably of 
the 8th century. 

Here is also the tomb of Donatus Colgan, who was priest in 
the reign of Queen Ann, at which time the laie^ts were qbUge^ 

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114 iNISHOtnsK. 

to register their names. As the ancient monumental carving 
throughout Inishowen is almost similar to this, I subjoin a note 
of the particulars. First, then, is the abbreviation I.BLS.^ 
next a flying angel ; next a cross, chalice, and book ; next the 
inscription, which is " Donatus Colganus Dounagh mefiri fecit, 
6 Die Augusti, Anno Domini 1703." Then there is a bell, 
death's head, and cross bones, and lastly, the words, "vlve 
memor lethi, fugit hora." 

This churchyard contains several relics of monumental art of 
very remote antiquity, and, in some cases, displaying the most 
perfect specimens of art. On the south side of the church there 
is a large slab of stone, 7 J, feet long, 1| feet broad, and 1 foot 
thick. It is red sandstone, such as can be got in the quarries 
that lie on the bouiidaries between Camdonagh and Olonmany 
parishes. On this stone there is a figure of the Crucifixion. 
The cross has two arms, an upper and lower arm. In shape 
and form, and in all but the size, it resembles a pectoral cross 
found at Youghal, in the county Cork, in 1814, and of which 
a good description appears in the "Ulster Journal of Archaeology." 
Ther6 are also the figures of the two thieves, one on each side of 
the crucified Redeemer. All these figures are in relievo. At 
thd bottom are the letters I.H.S., not in Roman capitals, but in 
black letter capitals. The workmanship on this stone is of the 
most elaborate kind, and displays a high state of art. It must 
be of old date, as black letter characters were not used in monu' 
mental art after the 15th century. Below this, and on the 
same side of the church there is another stone, 3} feet long, 
1| feet broad, and 10 inches thick. It is limestone. On this 
there is an incised floriated cross, surrounded by palm-branch 
chasings. This also displays a high st^te of art. 

There is also another stone, 4^ feet long, 1 foot 4 inches 
broad, and 8 inches thick. On this there is an incised coat of 
mail, and above this there is a battle axe and shield. The 
battle axe does not resemble the gallowglass axe of later times, 
but is like that known by the name of the Sparthe — Sparthe de 
ffiberma — such as " Gentle Mortimer" had on his armoury at 
Wigmore Castle, in 1322. This monument has nothing of a 
Christian character about it, but it displays a very high state 
of art, and is probably over the grave of a chieftain. 

There is another old monument, of which I subjoin the in- 
scription — " This MoNEMENT was erected by Hugh Dogharty, 
for the intering of Torlagh Dogharty, who died 8th of JuiK, 

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ILLICIT DISTILLATION. 1^5 

1636." Torlagh seems to have been a priest, as there are 
carved at the base the bell and chalice. It manifests a verj 
inferior style of art Allegorical art, as manifested on the 
stone, containing the figures of the bishop, cross, crown, and 
angels, is of the earliest Christian period. 

The baptismal font used in the church, and which stands in 
front of the communion table, was the baptismal font that* was 
used in the Catholic times, and is of the best Carrara marble. 

Allusion has already been made to the labours of St Patrick 
in this pai.4sh, but there is a tradition that at Ardnapaesta, in 
Glentogher, there existed a great serpent, the scourge and terror 
of all who passed that way — ^then, as now, one of the principal 
thoroughfares of the coun^. No earthly power could dislodge 
him from his stronghold. At the solicitations of the people 
St Patrick took the matter in hand, combated, and pierced 
him with his pastoral staff, and, bleeding as he was, compelled 
him by exorcisms to take his departure. Off the fearful thing 
crawled ; nor did he stop till he arrived at Lough Derg, the 
waters of which he dyed red with his blood. The lake became 
the serpent's grave, and, from the shedding of its blood therein, 
it obtained the name which it still bears. 

From the " Ulster Visitation Book," preserved in Trinify 
College, Dublin, we find that in the year 1622 Patrick M^TaJly 
was the Protestant minister of Camdonagh. He is said to be 
'' An Irishman, of mean gifts, having a little Latin and no Eng- 
lish, but sufficient for a parish consisting wholly of Irish." 



Chapter XII. 
Illicit DistUlatton, 



In a sketch, which purports to treat of Inishowen, it m9j 
likely be expected that something should be said of the on||j 
product of home manufacture which has become associated widi 
its name. I allude to that celebrated beverage, the synonyme 
for good spirits all over the world. The distillation of Iiidsh- 
owen whiskey has been carried on from time immemorial, and 
probably will be so carried on while light and darkness succeed 
each other. In every season of the year — ^'mid the bowlings 
of the winter's storm, or the serene calm of summer, the laugh- 
ing dayB of spring, and the haste and bustle of the autumn 
months — hordes of adventurous chemists are daily engaged in 
Ihe preparation of this article in their highland huts and moun- 



116 INISHOWEK. 



tain caverns. Not always with impunitj) however, can they 
cany it on, for the lynx-eyed constables of the Revenue Board, 
set on sometimes by wretched informers, make many desfmctive 
raids npon them, and seriously distmrb their avocations. A 
volume might be written on the subject of still-hunting alone. 
Many a long and fatiguing chase the mercurial smugglenr led 
the government troops and police over mountains, fens, and 
morasses. When the hunting party were perceived making 
their way to the scene of active operations, the smugglers' 
pickets, prompt to their duty, gave the concerted signal, which 
was transmitted, or rather telegraphed, with wonderful celerity. 
Sometimes a sharp, peculiar whistle conveyed the unwelcome 
intelligence, at others the sounding horn, or if the enemy ap- 
proached in the night, a line of fiery torches shot off along the 
hill-side, and, in the eloquenge of that mute display, the violator 
of the excise code had timely warning of impending danger. 
When the rendezvous happened to be on the sea-shore, as it 
often was, and the retreat cut off landwise by the approach- 
ing guard, then the little band, with the energy of despair, 
would place their more valuable apparatus in their ready skiff, 
and betake themselves to sea. On one noted occasion this 
stratagem was attempted in the little bay of Doughmore, Isle 
of Dough, but, ere all the valuables were got on board, the 
troops had possession of the boat, and a large quantity of the 
contraband which it contained. The latter they destroyed, but 
not so the boat ; that was too conspicuous an object to ruin in 
obscurity ; so, getting in, they brought it across the bay, and a 
cart being procured, an exploit which they accomplished with 
the utmost difficulty, \)ath on acooi^nt of the limit^ number of 
those vehicles to be found at the time, and the ei^treipe unwil- 
lingness which all manner of people had to hire anything which 
they owned for carrying out the objects of a penal statute ; but 
after some time the cart was procured, and the obnoxious boat 
thej tied upon it, hoisted its sail, and, under full cloth, trundled 
off through Glentogher, Ture, Muff, and into Deny, Such an 
unusual sight created as much wonderment along the road as 
if the great sea-serpent, conducted by the military, had passed 
up on a complimentary visit to the Custom-house authorities^ 
After it had taken place all the local jH^ophets concurred in 
.saying that Columbkille had prophesied it, and that it was 
one of the signs which should precede the world's dissolution. 
At Quigley's Point, on the leading road from Derxy to 



ILLICIT DI8T£LLATI0K. 117 

Moville, and about midway between them, a road strikes off 
nearly at right angles ; it runs up the slope of the hill due 
-west for nearly a mile, and then turns sharply to the north, 
leaving at this point the Clonilly National School embosomed 
in furze, unprofitably gay, and in its onward course passes 
through Glentogher, Cam, Malin, and eventually terminates 
at the sea near Malin Head. From the turn near the school 
the incline is gradually downward for about three miles, 
where it enters a narrow gorge or pass ; here the mountains 
on each side seem standing up in stem sullenness, and bid- 
ding a grim defiance to their opposite neighbours. Before the 
days of macadamizing, ere that vicious circle, the surveyor's 
ring, was known or invented, a bridle road led through here, 
and along its beaten and devious path horse and foot — pedes- 
trians and equestrians — were wont to make their way from or 
to the lovoer bottom of Inishowen. The neat bridge which now 
spans the roaring torrent of the hills was not there, but instead 
a line of colossal stepping stones ran across the ford, which 
means of transit was, in the language of the day, termed a 
ddghom. The stepping stones have vanished with the age to 
which they belonged, but the name, still more enduring, at- 
taches to the place. Before crossing the Ologhan in onr down- 
ward journey, we all at once and most unexpectedly meet a 
luxuriant plantation, in the very depth of the mountain wilder- 
ness. The trees are birch and Norway firs, larch, elms, and 
beeches ; in the midst there is an excellent farm-house, in good 
occupation. This Tadmor, oasis, or whatever you may term it, 
serves to show how adapted are our mountains in most parts 
for the growth of timber, which, if carefully attended to, would 
soon afford shelter to beasts and birds, and confer an air of 
embellishment on their sombre cheerless slopes. 

Crossing the Cloghan, a few minutes' walk will bring us to 
Ardnapaesta (from which the great serpent was expelled by St. 
Patrick) and the silver mines of Oarrowmore ; the road passes 
along them, and on the right, " like the baseless fabric of a 
vision," is the lone shell of a building designed for a mill for 
crushing and washing the argentiferous ore. We now enter 
Glentogher, where 

" Oft from out a tiny spent 
The bowl of Bacchus flowed." 

And well suited is the glen for such a purpose, abundance of. 
water in every part coming gushing down from unfailing foun- 



118 IKISHOWBK. 

tains in the hills, sparkling and pore as on the morning of 
Creationj with '< hides'' and haonts which the keenest experts 
have as yet &iled to discover. Glenagannon, or the glen be- 
yond, in allnsiou to the former one, because it lies beyond the 
hill to the edstf is a kind of cuL-de^ac, being hemmed in by 
mountains on all sides, save the north, where it opens on the 
plain of Maghtogher, already described ; the leading roads ter- 
minate at its inner extremity, beyond which is a wide-extended 
district of bog reaching to the confines of Carrickmaquigley on 
the Foyle. The history of Glenagannon is embodied in the 
annals and records of Somerset House, and must be well known 
to the authorities there, as it is the most notorious region in 
Inishowen, or, for its extent, perhaps, in Ireland, for this species 
of manufacture. My object, however, is not to go into detail 
on these matters, but simply to show how by nature, artifice, 
or stratagem, the police, &c., have been frustrated and foiled, 
notwithstanding their most strenuous endeavours to find it out. 
The road which enters this glen passes for a considerable 
distance along the edge of a steep bank, and as there is no fence 
or protection wall on that side the traveller must take great 
care to keep to the left ; one false step on the edge of the bank, 
and he is likely to be killed first and drowned after, for along 
its base deep and swift passes the mill-race of the £ev. Mr. 
Canning's flax and com mills. By keeping a steady look-out, 
then, he may reach in safety the woollen miU of Mr. Gamble, 
and then all danger is past. From here to a point near its 
centre the glen widens very considerably, and forms a kind of 
natural basin, the south side of which is enclosed by the beetliu^g 
l>rows and precipitous sides of Cruckroosky. Now, all at once 
the gle^ becomes narrow, and winds arpund the western side 
of the last-named mountain, passing " Gibraltar," " Pennsyl- 
vania," &C., and finally terminates in the swamps of Meena- 
honar. A rapid river rising in Lough Conn sweeps around 
the western base of Ci*uckroosky, down Glenagannon, and goes 
careering along to the sea at gtrabreagy. The habitations in 
the narrow part of the valley are situate along the very foot of 
the mountain, and the fields run down to the river. To the 
inhabitants the sun, moon, and heavenly bodies seem ever 
to rise through the summit of that mountain ridge, as if they 
made its interior a temporary resting-place, and bathe the 
valley in a sudden flood of light, as a refulgent lantern on the 
battlements of aosae feudal castle illumes the^<4ark rolling 

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ILLICIT DISTlLtATIOK. 119 



^«AJUW^^>^«'»Ai*WN<»*>^ 



Waters that glide silently along its foundations. The rising df 
the full moon in the autumn twilight is indescribably magni' 
ficent here. One evening, now long ago, a party of the Be- 
venue police was coming down along the river at a pretty brisk 
pace ; a still was at full work — ^not, indeed, directly before 
them, but somewhat to the right — 'they had passed the sentinels, 
who, fearing nothing on account of the course the police were 
taking, did not sound the alarm. "When they were within a 
very short distance of the stilUhouse, two of theii* number that 
were rather behind the others made a sudden detour, and were 
proceeding to the very place -^here the unconscious smugglers 
were engaged. What was now to be done ? By raising the 
alarm all in th« house might escape, and there Were more than 
a dozen in at the time, including visitors, all of whom, if taken, 
were equally amenable to the law ; but, though the partiea 
might escape, there could be little hope of saving the goods — 
they were virtually lost. Some means, if possible, must be de- 
vised to divert the police from their course — to withdraw them 
from this line, and get them to follow their comrades more 
directly* 

Pat, the tailor, Was woi'king at a dtistdmer's, and, as it was 
that time of evening when it is neither light nor dark, he was 
stepping about, as was his wont, for the half hour which pre- 
ceded the lighting of his candle ; he perceived the movement of 
the two policemen, and his quick brain instantly fixed on a 
mode of saving the smugglers. Despei'ate cases require des- 
perate remedies ; so I may as well state that Fat's plan was to 
simulate madness — ^to make a furious dash in the direction of 
the men, with the view of being apprehended by them, and 
escorted to his own home-— a plan which, if successful, would 
completely fulfil his design, for, going to his house, they should 
change their course, and take the very way of their comrades 
who had passed. He seized his scissors and a long stripe of 
brown paper he had stitched together. Which served him for a 
measuring tape, and, without hat or coat, sallied out at his 
utmost speed in the direction of the mountain. At that moment 
the full moon had just so far ascended as that her lower limb 
rested on the hill, and the sharp crags that lay near its sum- 
mit were beginning to put on a silvery hue. The sight of so 
odd a personage running towards them bare headed and with- 
out his coat, brandishing in one hand a pair of scissors, and in 
the other a coil of brown paper tape, astonished the policemen 

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laO IKtSHOWEK* 

in a high degree ; so, slackening their pace, to try if they could 
tuiderstand what it meant, they recognised Pat as he dashed 
obliquely .past them. " Hallo, Fat ! tear of war, man, will you 
be after telling us where you are bound ?" said one of them. 
Pat stood, his eyes glared wildly, and staring at them for about 
a quarter of a minute, said notldng. Off he was about to start 
again^ when he was laid hold of by both with an iron grasp. 
« Let me go, you murdering thieves ; how dare you waylay an 
honest man on business. I must be off at once, lor I'm late, 
Fm late,'' growled Pat, while he pointed his scissors to the 
moon. ''Pat, asthore," said the sweet-tongued Leitrim men, 
for such they were, '' let us kaiow whaf s the matter with you, 
aoid you may depind on our assistance, for we are sorry to see 
you in trouble." " Your assistance, ye varmin," said Pat, " I 
scorn your assistance, for I'm the most honoured tradesman on 
'arth ; drap yer hoults, for I tell you I'm going to the tap of 
Cruokroosky to ketch the moon, and to take the governor's 
measure for a pair of breeches, which I am to make to order ; 
do ye understand that, ye neygars V* 

This was enough ; no more was requisite to convince them 
that Pat was utterly demented ; so they kindly took him in 
charge, and, with much apparent reluctance on his part, they 
escorted him home. By tJiis manoeuvre the smugglers, with 
their goods and chattels, escaped. It would be tedious and 
useless to go on giving incident after incident oif capture and 
escape, to show how extensively this business has been carried 
on ; suffice it to say that, through the entire of this extensive 
barony it has prevailed, there being scarcely a townland or sub- 
division which could be excepted. 

Nor was it carried on with impunity ; destructive visitations 
and numerous arrests testify how well the military and police 
performed their duties. In those arrests even informers some- 
times came to grief. A Bevenue officer, now dead, told me 
that he knew noted smugglers who were informers. A man of 
this class came to him one evening and told him where he might 
find a still at work, and named an hour at which, if the party 
attended, they would be sure to make a hauL It was ac- 
jcordingly arranged that the police should attend at that hour, 
and the informer departed. The officer, suspecting himself to 
.be a partner, was at the place indicated an« hour earlier than 
tiie appointed time, and had the gratification of capturing his 
informant, with the others, at the side of the stiU. Hints and 

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ILLICKP DISTILLATION. 1'21 

gestures were of no avail in softening the obdurate heart of the 
officer ; he was marched off with the others, and made to shar^ 
their fate. It may seem incredible that a man should inform 
against what he was himself part proprietor of, but that 
paradox is explained by the fact that such was done only when 
the ram, happened to appear bad or unproductive, and the bribe 
consequently better to the traitor than his shfffe of the pro- 
duce. In justice to the officer, I must add that he never gave 
the slightest idea who that party was, and the secret^ like 
many others, now lies with him in the darkness and silence of 
the grave. 

After arrest the captives were conveyed in due coursi9 before 
the local tribunals, where, being gravely lectured on the mis- 
chief and immorality of their trade, they were, in default of 
payment of the penalty, consigned to the coimty prison, where 
by this time the catalogue of the offenders against this branch 
.of our laws must be a long one. 

After Glenagannon the most celebrated spot for smuggling in 
Inishowen is the Meedians, in Iskaheen. The word Meedians 
means meadows. There are four townlands of this name 
closely adjoining each other — ^Meedianmore, Meedianban, 
Meedianbuidhe, Meedianroe. Some fifteen years ago it was by 
no means a rare thing to find a dozen stills at work at the same 
time in these townlands. For the most part they worked in 
the broad daylight ; sentries were placed on the neighbouring 
hills to watch the movements of the police, and if it happened 
to be during the night, a aentinel kept watch on the Revenue 
barrack to ascertain the direction they would go in case they 
proceeded to night duty. The process of doubling or singling, 
however, does not afford such an ample field for the smuggler's 
ingenuity as the making of the malt or the hiding of th^ 
working barrel. The malt is often made on the mountain 
side; there is a hole scooped out large enough to admit a 
human body, and to contain a bag of malt. The eitrance is 
covered by a few overhanging branches of heather, and so well 
is it concealed that the eye of the most experienced policeman 
would often fail to discover the spot. The barrel is generally 
sunk on the public highway, or in a boundary fence, where tfie 
ownership of the property is hard to be proved. It is sotiie- 
times to be found near running water, and the stream fiowitig 
over it. The people of the Meedians were up to all these de^ 
vices. When the whiskey was made they curried it on horsie* 

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122 INISHOWEN. 



back (and strong swift horses they generally kept,) up to 
Meenamalty at the bas& of Granu's Gap. Here they sold it to 
dealers, who conveyed it in their loads of turf to Derry. Some 
of the leading merchants and magistrates connected with the 
city, aye, and churchmen, too, were its best patrons. 

It was a cold day in the month of March, the snow lay to 
the depth of several inches on the ground ; the venerable pastor 
of the parish received a sick call to Meedianmore ; without 
delay he proceeded on his journey. It was a case of confine- 
ment, and Dr. B., who at that time resided in Moville, had 
been called in to attend. Although the old priest was an 
enemy of intemperance, and no friend to the smuggler, the 
people- of the Meedians had a custom as soon as they found the 
priest in the district to set the still at work. We believe the 
cause of this was the Kevenue police, who, as a nde, were a 
most honourable body, had a respect for the venerable old man, 
and were unwilling to intrude on the house where Ije held a 
station or discharged any clerical function. The old man was 
not aware of this, for he was guileless and unsuspecting as a 
child. A smuggler belonging to Meedianmore having learned 
that the priest was in the town and likely to remain there for 
some time, set his still to work in an old ruined edifice adjoin- 
ing his dwelling-house. He had scarcely commenced operations 
when the police officer and twelve men of the Quigley's Point 
station were seen making their way in the direction of Meedian- 
more. What was to be done? To cease operations all the 
material would be destroyed ; to carry away the still and worm 
would attract the attention of the police to the place. In this 
dilemma our smuggler rushed to the house where the priest 
was, told his story briefly but pathetically. ^' Sir, can you do 
anything for me ; I am not one of your flock, it is true, but 
still I am sure that will make no difierence. I am a poor man, 
have a small family dependent upon me for their support, times 
are bad, provisions high, there is no labour, if I lose this I lose 
all I am possessed of ; our house is without money, even with- 
out food, do I beseech you strive and do all you can.'' The 
appeal was not without its effect. " Doctor," said the priest, 
"can you leave your patient?" "Yes," said the doctor, 
" there is no present necessity for my remaining here." " Well, 
then, let us have a walk." The doctor and the priest then pro- 
ceeded in the direction the officer and men were coming. 
There waa a warm shake hands and a cordial greeting between 

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ILLICIT DISTILLATION. 123 



the officer and the priest, for they were on intimate terms. 
** Have you a station here to-day ?" said the officer. " No," 
said the priest, " 'tis a sick-call, a woman in confinement ;" 
then turning round to the doctor the priest said, " Doctor, per- 
haps it is not right those police should pass by the door where 
this sick woman is lying ; an alarm in her case might be dan- 
gerous 1" " I am glad you reminded me of it," said the 
doctor, " it would be serious." " Oh, then," said the officer, 
" let them by no moans pass that way." Then addressing the 
sergeant he said, " Sergeant, take those men round by Meedian- 
ban." The police went this way, the smuggler escaped, and 
many and fervent were the prayers that he heaped on the head 
of the good priest. A few days after, when the priest m5t the 
officer, he told him the whole affair, and no one enjoyed it more 
than the officer himself. 

Let me not, however, be understood as having any sympathy 
for this class of craftsmen, or any desire that their trade should 
continue to flourish. I have neither ; moreover, I endorse 
the opinion that it is a mischievous and immoral trade, engen- 
dering irregularities, sloth, intemperance, and other vices, of 
which many who were employed in it became the victims. 
The Government and the Legislature I consider responsible for 
this. And why ? Because it was by their imposing unwise 
restrictions on .the legal distillers that smuggling was first 
started and originat-^d. Tliese restrictions had also the effect 
of preventing the •licensed distillers from producing a good 
marketable article. So much did the private distillers surpass 
them in this respect that it was at one time held to be the best 
recommendation for the sale of whiskey to be able to certify 
that ** the eye of a ganger never saw it." Even now, by 
maintaining a duty of 300 per cent, on the cost price on spirits 
consumed in the country, the Government hold out the most 
tempting inducements to a people already predisj)osed for smug- 
gling to carry it on. Landlords, too, in former times, were to 
blame for its encouragement, and they did so because it gave 
a ready and profitable market for grain, the produce of their 
land. 

But let the duties be given up, and illicit distillation will 
soon be a thing of the past. Nothing else is likely to 
put a stop to it or cure society of its attendant evils, as, I 
believe, we will never be made moral or religious by act of 
parliament, ^ , 

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124 nrisHowEK. 



Chapter XIII. 

Cloncha, 

"We will now proceed to the parish of Cloncha, by the road 
from Cam to Malin town. There is a bridge on this road 
where it winds round the head of Strabreagy, and, when the tide 
is full, a most pleasing view of the lough may be obtained from 
it even to its inlet at Knockameny, with the white waves of 
the Atlantic showing their bulky masses each now and then, 
like hoary elephants at play amidst the sand banks, whilst theii^ 
deep booming roar is often heard for miles around. 

" There is a pleasure in the pathless woods, 
There is a rapture on the lonely shore, 
There is society where none intrndes, 
By the deep sea, and masic in its roar ; 
I love not man the less, but nature more, 
From these our interviews, in which I steal 
From all I may be, or have been before. 
To mingle with the universe, and feel 
What I can ne'er express, yet cannot all conceal." — Btron. 

Beyond the bridge we pass a remarkable conical knoll, slightly 
rounded off at top, and named Doonkintra. It rises boldly and 
abruptly above the level of the surrounding fields, and its rich 
-emerald covering of luxuriant grass and shamrocks contrasts 
b»3autifully with the purplish heath beyond. It is also remark- 
able as being the spot on which was held the monster Repeal 
meeting of this barony on the 7th of August, 1843. And 
iin^-ularly suitable for the occasion was the " Green HQl." 
Another place could scarcely be obtained at the time on which 
to bo.'i a mfteting for giving expression to the popular mind on 
th',> f/rnt question of the day. A section of the oligarchy 
becarr. '. alarmed, and sheltered themselves behind the muskets 
of th J iDilitary. But there was no need for apprehension, all 
w^r^ iliOroughly impressed with the maxim of their great 
dir.ci/ji, ''He who commits a crime gives strength to the 
eijjmy/ vj that the thousands and tens of thousands who came 
ihit rjfy -..om Fahan and from Cloncha, from Clonmany and 
>IovjH - ijoni Culdaff and from Donagh, with ardent and hope- 
fiil ]^ ..;}•.'-., w.re most peaceful, orderly, and sober. Naught, 
xhon., Lo/l IK , a[)irited proprietor of the land, J. M'Sheffry, 
Esq., »o ■r<)rj\:t tor permitting them to use it. 

Tu^ liij-r rgi' ition has gone for naught, jO'Connell waa 

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CLONCHA. 125 

baffled in his aims and object, and Ireland groans under the 
burthen of her sorrows. But there is a good time coming. 

** Freedom's battle once begun, 
Bequeathed by bleeding sire to son. 
Though baffled oft, is ever won." — Btbon. 

At the foot of the Green Hill, on the very edge of the lough, 
are two holy wells, which were formerly much frequented by 
the people for the cure of certain diseases. 

Crossing a fine old bridge which spans a creek of Strabreagy, 
we enter the village or little town of Malin, which is about 
three miles distant from Carn. It contains about thirty 
houses, and is triangular in shape, enclosing a similarly shaped 
fair green. I believe there is a patent for holding markets on 
Tuesdays at thia place, but they have long been discontinued. 
Three fairs are held in it in the year, but these also are de- 
clining. There is but one public-house in it, and, therefore, 
but limited accommodation. 

ThercL is a national school, penny post-office, constabulary 
barrack, and dispensary in it, and petty sessions are held once 
a month. The parish church, a neat building surmounted with 
a handsome square tower, stands here. It was erected in 1827 
by a loan of JB200 from the Board of First Fruits, and a gift of 
XlOO each from Mr. Haryey, of Malin HaU, and Dr. Enox, 
Bishop of Derry. 

The parish of Cloncha contains 19,643 acres. A great por- 
tion of the land is hilly. The mountains of Knockbrack and 
Knockamany constitute the higher grounds, and their sides are 
covered with heather, coarse grass, and bog. They are com- 
posed chiefly of ^ schist and clay slate, with some limestone, 
chiefly in the low grounds. There are also some detached 
masses of granite and porphyry. At the bens or precipices near 
Lag, the stratification c^ the rocks is beautifully apparent, and 
at Malin Head is a famous beach composed of pebbles of coral, 
jasper, chalcedony, opal, agate, and cornelian, some of which 
are of considerable vsJue, and set in rings, seals, and necklaces. 
Population, according to last census, 5,929. The natural 
scenery of Lag and its neighbourhood is singularly attractive — 
it is, in fact, all that might be imagined regarding some place 
of enchantment, for it has quite the appearance of fairy ladid. 
Passing Gorey, the green slopes of the hill-side are broken up 
into a series of lofty precipices ; these are partly overgrown 
with ivy, and the emerald foliage thus adhering to them con- 

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126 INISHOWEN. 



trasts beautifully, especially in the winter months, with the 
yellow sands extending all down along the sea. The road for a 
considerable distance passes through these sands, which are 
partly overgrown with bent-grass, and literally alive with rab- 
bits. The place, I understand, is farmed for the sake of these 
animals, which are taken in nets and traps in the months of 
September and October, and exported in large quantities to 
Glasgow or Liverpool. No dwelling is here ; and the tourist, 
as he passes through it, with towering hills and precipices on 
one side, and the waters of Strabreagy, the sand-knolls and far 
extended beach on the other, feels himself quite alone with 
nature in all her solitary loveliness and bewitching grandeur ; 
and cold indeed must his heart be if he can behold, unmoved, 
the surpassing beauties of this lovely place. One edifice only 
stands here ; it is situated at the foot of those grand old hills, 
in view of the ocean, and within hearing of the undying boom 
of its waters. It is the Catholic Chapel of Lagg, the first 
erected in the barony, and built by Dean O'Donnell in 1784. 

Among the vast precipices on the Atlantic coast of the parish 
is Malin Head, the most northern point of Ireland, lat. 55°20', 
long. 7°24'. Near the head, at a place named Ballyhillion, is 
the yawning sable chasm denominated " Hell's Hole." The 
rock here is as hard as adamant, consequently this opening 
could not have been gradually scooped by lihe continual action 
of the waves upon it. It is about 90 yards in length, having 
a cavern at the inner extremity, through which the waves con- 
stantly pass and repass ; its breadth is about 8 feet, and depth 
to the surface of the water lOn feet. 

By what magician's wand or Titanic force could this sombre 
passage have been created ? Could the rock have been pierced 
by the chariot of old Neptune himself, or is it due to the 
momentum of some shattered world, impinging with fearful 
crash against the head of oM Erin ? The ruins of the old signal 
tower of Ballyhillion are also here. 

Eight miles east of the Head is the island of Ennistrahal 
(meaning the island beyond.) It has a lighthouse with re- 
volving light visible once in every two minutes. 

The next object of interest is the " Well." It is a natural 
basin formed in the rock, and covered by every tide ; this is a 
favourite bathing place, and invalids resort to it for the re- 
covery of their health. It is said to have been blessed by a 
saint of the olden time, and several wonderful stories are told 

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CLOKCflA. 127 



of the cures effected by its waters. Near it are the remains of 
an old conventual Church, which, according to tradition, was 
built by one Saint Maher,' and the stones of which it was built 
appear to have been imported from Downhill. Nearly the 
whole northern coast of this parish is one continuous precipice ; 
it is known by the name of the Bengorms. To be seen to f iiU 
advantage these stupendous bens must be viewed from the sea. 
The clif^B can be descended at only a few points, the current 
runs swiftly along them, and the action of the waves in times 
of storm is here very violent. It is not unusual to see large 
pieces of timber and the skeletons of fishes high and dry on a 
shelf of rock, and which were there lashed up by the waves* 
The fishermen have much to contend with, and but poor ap« 
pHances for prosecuting their business ; many speak of the 
eligibilty of Slieveban for a fishing station similar to that es- 
tablished by the Deep Sea Fishing Company at Portnablaghk 
The country around these bens is mountainous ; a portion of it 
is called the Black Mountain* Near the summit of this moun> 
tain is the lake of Meedianmore, which is of considerable 
extent, being about a mile in circumference, and from the 
borders of which many extensive views may be obtained* 
Away in the west may be seen the rocky, tower-like Isle of 
Tory ; the broad Atlantic is here upon our right ; and by this 
coast passes weekly the Canadian packet, freighted with the 
exiles of the country, who, as they pace her deck, get here 
almost the last glimpse of the land of their nativity. And en» 
joyment it is, though a melancholy one, to view these old head- 
lands on the evening of their departure ; for well they know 
that though to-morrow's sun may arise in all his radiance and 
majesty, yet within the circle he illuminates they will look in 
vain for 

*' The green hills of holy Ireland.'* 

Hence it is that here our emigrants give the country their 
parting benediction, and a long, last, lingering look of farewell. 
From this lake also may be seen overlooking the ocean the hills 
of Dunaff and Binion, and, with a moderate telescope, the 
waters of Lough Foyle, dotted with every species of craft, horn 
the first-rate merchantman down to the tiny fishing boat. 
From this vantage ground, too, it is pleasant to behold, on a 
midsummer evening, the sun anking to his rest in the lap of 
the ocean. 

On the narth-we«t of th« parish of Cloncha there is a little 

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126 TNlSHOWEK. 



bay. The well-cultivated hill-side of Cammalin overlooks it 
from one direction ; on the opposite side green fields, fringed 
by the rocky coast, rise above it successively to the top of the 
bens of Knockameny. This little inlet is called the Bay of 
Killoort. The land about the bay is more than usually' fertile. 
A long course of careful cultivation and abundance of seaweed, 
cast up by the waves, carefully gathered and converted into 
manure, have made it so. At the head of the bay is the 
village of Killoort, a place much frequented by health- seekers 
during the summer months. In the year 1525 a family bear- 
ing ^n honoured name settled here. The date of their settle- 
ment is shown by a carved inscription on a piece of Jiard oak, 
kept carefully in the family. The name is O'Doherty. The 
piece of " glen-wood oak" is not the only interesting record in 
their possession. There is also a parchment, by which it ap- 
pears that the head of the house has been Cahir and Conn 
alternately from the period above mentioned down to the 
present time. When its young chief fell, and Elagh was dis- 
mantled, and this peninsula became the property of strangers, 
Lord Chichester gave an annuity of ^10 per annum to that 
family, in consideration of their claim to the forfeited lands. 
This annuity was paid regularly down till the death of the 
father of the present representative of the family. Soon after 
the payment was discontinued, Captain Hart, being landlord 
under the Marquis of Donegall, hearing of the curious parch- 
ment, sent for it, in order to examine it. His wish was com- 
plied with, and, on hearing the account relative to the annuity, 
he was astonished at its discontinuance. He was highly 
interested in regard to this humble but ancient peasant family, 
and promised to use his influence in having their little income 
restored. But the good captain soon after died, and the matter 
fell into abeyance. Not far from Killoort is a glen which runs 
from west to east. A anall river of limpid water traverses this 
glen. The river, though usually small, is often in the winter 
swollen by the rains of the neighbouring mountains, and is 
then along its course rapid and unfordable. At the western 
extremity of this glen is the townland of Keenagh. Keenagh 
was the residence of Shane O'Doherty, (Macavergy) who was 
a major in the army of James II. When that pusillanimous 
monarch, of amiable but ill-fated lineage, took refuge from 
imaginary dangers in a foreign land. Major O'Doherty returned 
iK> his native mountains, and took up his abode in Irish Keenagh. 

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CLONCHA. 129 



The major had two sons, one of whom dying left his property 
to his widow. Some misunderstanding, which led to disagree- 
ment, arose between the widow and her brother-in-law, and, in 
consequence, she determined to dispose of her portion of the 
property. With these intentions she went to Perry, and there 
made publication of her design. A carter who drove through 
the streets, and did jobbing at the inn, hearing of the ^matter, 
came to Mrs, O'Doherty, and proposed to purchase her property 
by private contract. He oflfered £50. She would not accept 
it. He then proposed to add thereto a silk gown. With that 
love of finery for which the gentle sex hare ever been so re- 
markable, she accepted the offer, and the bargain was concluded. 

Many have made their fortunes in the famous city of Derry, 
but our carman made hia by leaving it. He forthwith pro- 
ceeded to Keenagh, and set up a little shop, which he attended 
to, in addition to the farm. . Major O'Doherty's other son became 
his customer at the shop, and, unfortunately for himself, a too 
partial one. Strong drink was sold there — aye, and without a 
license, too ; and bit by bit the lands of 0*Doherty dwindled 
away. Mine host was very obliging. When the flood in 
Keenagh river was too high for Mr. O'Doherty to make his 
nocturnal visit to the shop, he used to call, and forthwith the 
horse was sent to carry him across. This continued for a 
length of time ; but one night, when 0*Dohei*ty made his usual 
application to be carried over, a stern voice from the opposite 
bank cried out — " No ! You have now no more land to sell ; 
take care of the little money which remains with you ; but, at 
any rate, I won't send the horse." 

The enterprising carman became bailiff to the Marquis of 
Donegal), and afterwards his agent in this locality. Perhaps I 
should remark that he was of the Presbyterian religion, but 
this he abandoned for a more aristocratic form of worship, and 
he became an Episcopalian. Years rolled on and the old man 
died, but the tide of prosperity continued to flow with his de- 
scendants, and at last they became lessees and owners of pro- 
perty under the Marquis. 

At that time Dan O'Doherty, a descendant of the major, 
lived near Keenagh. He was of course of the ancient stock ; 
the red blood of Cahir was careering in his veins ; he thought 
himself the inferior, at least, of no one in the district ; and, 
what was better still, he was thrifty and industrious. Dan had 
a taste for music ; hia favourite instrument was the harp. H« 

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130 n^ISBOWElT. 



■W8B a farmer by profession, l>nt an amateur harper for his own 
amm^neiKt He -was on friendly and visiting terms with the 
party above described. On the occasion of removing to their 
new mansion a ball was given by them, and among many 
others Dan CDoherty was present, and occasionally entertained 
the company by performing on the harp. 

When the guests were nearly abont to take their departure 
the master of the mansion rose, and proceeded among them, 
plate in hand, and made a collection, which he tendered Jx) Dan 
O'Doherty. The latter, seeing the position in which the host 
sought to place him, and considering that he had been invited 
there in order to be publicly insulted, indignantly refused the 
money, slung his harp across his shoulder and proceeded home. 
On reaching there he broke his beloved instrument, and was 
never known to play on any other afterwards. 

** The minstrel fell, but the foeman's chain 
Could not bring his proud soul under* 
The harp he lov'd ne'er spoke again, 
For he tore its chords asunder; 
And said, no chains shall sully thee, 
Thou soul of love and bravery ; 
Thy songs were made for the pure and free, 
They shall never sound in slavery." — Moobe. 

The employment of the people of this parish is chiefly agri- 
cultural ; but along the entire coast, from Killoort to Glengad, 
kelp-making and fishing are much followed. There are local 
agents for purchasing the kelp, and the price varies from 3s 6d 
to 5s per cwt. What is made here is chiefly exported to the 
Messrs. Patterson, of Glasgow, under the efficient superin- 
tendence of their much respected agent, T. Montague, Esq. 
Codfish, turbot, plaice, sole, ling, and a very nutritions little 
fish, which the people call garvan, are taken here. Mudi of 
the cod is sold at Moville, sometimes so high as 25s per dozen, 
and exported to Liverpool and Glasgow ; and in summer large 
quantities of dog-fish are obtained, from which oil is extracted 
by the fishermen. It would seem that the boats and 
tackle used are quite too frail for the trade on that boisterous 
coast, in the winter montiis especially. Hence wrecks, attended 
with loss of life, frequently occur. In their slim skiffs these 
hardy fishermen push off to sea, often out of sight of land, and 
though the weather may be tranquil at their d^>arture from 
home, it not unfrequently happens that they are caught in the 



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CLOKCHA. 131 



tempest ere they return, and sometimes swamped, sometimes 
"driven into the western islands of Scotland. 

" Deep midnight now involves the livid skies, 

While infant breezes f roni the shore arise ; 

The waning moon, behind a watery shroad, 

Pale-gUmmer'd o'er the long protracted clond. 

A mighty ring around her silver throne, 

With parting meteors crossed, portentous shone* 

This in the troubled sky full oft prevails, 

Oft deemed a signal of tempestuous gales." — Falconer. 

Before day of a winter morning, now some years ago, a num- 
ber of boats from Ballygorman and its vicinity went off for the 
deep-sea fishing grounds. It was moonlight, and the men 
understood from the halo which surrounded the moon that a 
storm was not very far distant. Yet the morning, which was 
calm, was followed by a fine day, and the whole party arrived 
at their station in good order, good spirits, and in good time. 
They set to work, did each boat's crew diligently, for the fish 
appeared in abundance around them ; and the number taken 
on that day was so great as amply to repay them for their 
long and wearisome voyage. Towards evening, when they 
were preparing to return, the sky began to wear a threatening 
appearance. The clouds began to darken in the west, and, 
whilst they spread round and round, they were tinged with a 
fiery redness wherever an opening appeared among them. The 
wind, too, was cold and hissing, and the surface of the sea get- 
ting quickly troubled. In short, there were all the symptoms 
of a rising storm, and the boatmen began making the best of 
their way home. One boat's crew remained longer on the 
fishing ground than the others, and was soon lost sight of by 
them. So intent were they with the business on hand that 
they paid too little attention to the change in the weather, and 
were, therefore, left behind. The storm momentarily increased, 
high wind, accompanied with blinding torrents of rain and 
sheets of lightning — a perfect hurricane in fact. The parties who 
took time by the forelock narrowly escaped drowning; and, 
after throwing all their fish into the sea, and buffeting the 
elements for four hours beyond the usual time occupied in the 
voyage, at length reached home, not only exhausted, but nearly 
lifeless from fatigue. By the time the last boat began to shape 
its homeward course they were completely caught in the 
itorm. Their best exertions were of little avail, while their little 

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132 INISHOWEN. 



boat was carried alternately from the deep trougli of the sea to 
the crest of a coming billow, and then plunged with fearful 
rapidity as deep on its opposite side. They, too, threw out 
their cargo, the produce of their whole day's labour, which 
they had been so particularly anxious to secure ; but it*was all, 
all in vain ; no amount of strength they could command, aided 
by all expedients, could enable them to make way against that 
feaiful storm. 

In this extremity of danger, and considering that they had 
but little time to live, the four — ^this was the number of men 
iB the boat — ^addressed themselves in ardent prayer to the 
thiKHLe of the Almighty, beseeching Him to have compassion 
upon them, and to grant them forgiveness of their sins ; also, 
if it were not pleasing to His adorable will to prolong their 
Uves, to strengthen them by His Holy Spirit to bear with 
Christian ly^signation the perils of that dreadful hour, and to 
have mercy on their immortal souls through their Bedeemer's 
Hjierits. I trust we may believe that the prayers of the fisher- 
men were heard, that He who rebuked the winds and calmed 
^ troubled waters of the Sea of Gallilee was attentive to 
th^ petition. Amid the howling of the tempest a very unex- 
pected sound attracted their attention, it was Uiat of the chirp* 
ing of a snow-white bird which had perched itself on the stem- 
liead of the boat, a very extraordinary visitant at such. ^ tim/s 
iqid place, 

** A bird was perched as fond and taioe 

And tamer than npon the .tree — 

A lovely bird, with snow-wMte wings 

And song that said a thonsand things, 

And seein'd to say them all lor me 1 

I never saw it's WiB before, 

I ne*er shall see its likeness more ; 

I know not if it late were free, 

Or broke the cage to perch on me, 

Or if it were in winged guise 

A visitant from Paradise. 

For, Heaven forgive that thonght I the whijo 

Which made me both to weep and smile, 

I sometimes deem'd that it might be 

An angel that came down to me.** 

Btbon's " PnisoNSB OF Chillov.** 

The sight of thjB bird inspired them with courage and with 
hope; so, keeping their boat steadily before the gale, they 
allowed it to drift on and on, whithersoever the waves would 
carry it-^^nd that was into one of the Hebrides — ^that group 



y Google 



CLONCHA. 133 

of islands on the western coast of Scotland. Here they Tr«re 
very kindly received and entertained by the natives, who, 
before their departure, collected a considerable sum of money, 
•whidi they presented to them, and sent them home rejoicing* 
The feelings of their friends and aoquaintanoes on their re- 
appearance among them, after a fortnight's absence^ may be 
better imagined than described. 

The living in this parish is a rectory, is ihe patronage of the 
Marquis of Donsgall. The glebe contains 370 acres, and the 
tithesamount to £399 nett. The olddiurch of Cloncha, which has 
been disused since 1827, appears to have been at first an abbey. 
Near it is a stone pillar, 1 8 feet high, which was the shaft of a 
cross, and is ornamented with scrolls and emblems. The upper 
part of the cross is broken off, and stands on a small cairn a 
little to the west. In the burying-ground are tombs of the 
G'Doughertys and O'Brallaghans, whidi are of considerable 
antiquity, some of the inscriptions dating as far back as the 
beginning of the leth oentury. 

Within the church, on the gospel side of the san'ctuary, is 
a tomb, over which is a magnificent stone, with an inscription 
on emblems neatly carved in high relief. The inscription is a 
monogram in mediaeval characters, and the emblems consist of 
a broad sword, hurl- bat and ball, two Jleur-de-lis, one erect, the 
other prostrate, and a large cross in the centre, which runs the 
whole length of the stone. 

In this churchyard are also interred the remains of the Eev. 
Mr. Sheridan, a Roman Catholic priest, who accompanied Prince 
Charles Stuart to the Continent, and returned with him when 
he made an unsuccessful attempt to regain the throne of his 
fathers. No stone marks the good clergyman's resting-place, 
though in life he was the attendant and companion of royalty. 

In the Roman Catholic divisions the old church of Cloncha 
is situated in the present parish of Culdaff, and part of Cloncha 
is united with part of Culdafi*, forming, by the same divisions, 
the union of Cloncha ; the remaining portions of both parishes 
form the parish of Culdaff. In the penal times mass was 
celebrated at a place known as the cave of Cathal Dubh, near 
the house of Michael Cramsey, on the road from Malin to 
Lagg ; the remains of a stone altar are still at i^is place ; it 
was also celebrated at Aughaclay, at Carthage, and at Keenagh. 

I\Dr the past century the first priest of whom we have any 
mention is Friar George O'Doherty, a native (d the parish, and 



134 INISHOWEN. 



"who' was buried in Lagg. He was succeeded by Dr. O'Don- 
nell, on his return from Paris in 1784 ; Dr. O'Donnell was 
merely administrator, as the friar was still alive. He was suc- 
ceeded by the Rev. Mr. Kane, a native of TerscuUion, in the 
parish of Culdaff. Mr. Kane lived only a short time ; he was 
succeeded by the Bev. Mr. Shiel, who, in 1794, was trans- 
ferred to Clonmany. He was succeeded by the Rev. Philip 
Doherty, of Priesttown, in the parish of Donagh, who died in 
1806, and was buried in Lagg. He was succeeded by the 
Rev. Patrick M*Kenna, a native of Maghera, who died in 
1820, and was also buried in Lajig. Father M'Kenna was 
educated in Paris, which he quitted along with the Rev. Mr. 
Morgan during the first days of the Revolution. 

It is said that the scenes of bloodshed which they then wit- 
nessed affected Mr. Morgan so much that his hair became grey 
in a single night. Father M'Ksnna was succeeded by the Rev. 
James OTlaherty, a native of Urney, who died in 1826, and 
was buried in Lagg. He was succeeded by the Rev. Neil 
O'Flaherty, a native of Termonamongan, who exchanged for 
Longfield, in the county Tyrone, and afterwards for his native 
parish, where he died. He is said to have carried with him 
the Holy Stone, a relic o£ the old conventual chapel of MaUn 
Well, kept, until his time, by the O'Oormans, of Ballygorman. 
He was succeeded by the Rev. Francis M'Hugh, who remained 
only for a short time, and exchanged for Longfield. Mr. 
M*Hugh was succeeded in 1839 by the Rev. Philip Porter, the 
present parish priest. ' 

There are chapels at Lagg, (built in 1784) Aughaclay, (built 
about 40 years ago) and at Malin Head, which was built in 
1847. Outside the chapel of Aughaclay there is a beautiful 
echo ; words of five syllables can be heard pretty distinctly from 
it, but words of three or four syllables accurately. 

At Gorey there is a large Presbyterian Meetinghouse, which 
is in connexion with the General Assembly. 

The patron saint of Cloncha was St. Brolchan. The modern 
name is Bradley. Another old monastery stood in this parish ; 
it was called Templemoyle, or Tapal Movie, There is yet an 
old burying-ground, surrounded by a stone wall, with an iron 
gate at the place. Dr. O'Donovan, in his Annals of the Four 
Masters, says that in his time the monastery had ceased to 
exist, but that there were many books in the neighbourhood 
written by St. Brolchan. 

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CULDAFF. ia5 



The principal seats are Malin Hall, the residence of J. Har- 
vey, Esq., J. P. It is situated on the edge or shore of Stra- 
"breagy, in a beautifully planted and well-wooded demesne. 
Rockfort, the residence of the Eev. J. Canning ; Gorey Lodge, 
and Drumaville House, the residence of J. M*Sheffry, Esq. 
There are National Schools at Malin, Urblereigh, Malin Head, 
Keenagh, Grorey, Aughaclay, and Cookinny. There are stations 
of the constabulary and coastguards at Malin Head. 

From the "Ulster Visitation Book" it appears that in 1622 
Edward Boucher was minister of Clonclia. He is said to be "ah 
lionest man, but no licensed preacher ; fit, however, to catechise, 
and speak and read Irish, and sufficient for a parish wholly 
speaking Irish." 



Chapter XIV. 
Culdaff. 



The parish of Culdaff is bounded on the west and south by 
Cloncha, Donagh, and Upper Moville ; on the east by Lower 
Moville, and on the north-east by the Atlantic. It is six miles 
distaait from the town of Moville. The population in 1861 
was 4,895. It contains 20,089 acres ; but nearly two-thirds 
of the entire are mountain and bog. The highest mountain is 
Croagh, at Glengad ; and then follow Carthage, Clonkeen, and 
Crucanoneen. These ridges are covered with bog, over which 
grows heath or coarse grass. Limestone is abundant in 
Gleneely; this name itself implies the glen or vale of lime. 
Much of it is raised and burned here, and carted off to Clon- 
many, Donagh, Buncrana, &c., where it is sold for building 
purposes. At Dunmore there exists a very fine quarry of clay- 
slate, from which flagstones, lintels, headstones, and grave- 
stones of best quality, and of a hard and fine-grained texture 
are obtained. The land is chiefly cold, but in some parts, as 
in the neighbourhood of Cashell, Baskill, Kindroyhead, and 
Tierawee, much improved by cultivation. In the several bogs 
fir and oak, in a good state of preservation, are found embedded. 
The moorland extends westward to Malin, surrounding, as it 
approaches the head of Strabreagy, small elevated knolJs, known 
as the " Isles of Grellagh,'' in the parish of Cloncha ; and it is 
surmised that the sea once flowed around these " islands,^' as 
marine exuviae are found beneath the bog. Compare what has 

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136 INISHOTTElf. 



been said regarding Strabreagy wbere turf bog exists, in deep 
and extensive beds, beneath the sand and gravel. 

There is a considerable indentation of the ocean of a semi' 
circular form, known as CuldaflF Bay, on the boundary of this 
parish. It is bounded on th^ north by the rocky promontory 
of Carthage, and on the c^poeite side is Bedford ; between these 
two points is an extensive sandy beach, composed of coarse red 
sand, largely intermixed with powdered shells, corals, &c. The 
big green waves roll in magnificently along this strand, and from 
its sheltered situation is regarded by many as a favourite 
bathing place. The bathers sometimes amuse themselves by 
crouching on the sand and allowing wave after wave to roll 
en masse over them, but unless they are expert swimmers this 
is rather a dangerous experiment, for sometimes the water, 
when returning, carries them back along with it. Some year» 
ago a Catholic clergyman, the Eev. Mr. Clarke, I believe, wa» 
drowned while bathing here.. 

Through this bay the locality enjoys a good position for 
carrying on a coasting trade, but little or nothing is done ia 
the way. On the margin of the bay, and about half way 
between ita two extreme pointSj stands the village of Culdaff, 
through which the principal river of the parish flows, and then, 
winding through sand banks, slowly enters the sea. Trout and 
salmon of first quality are taken in this river, and for that 
purpose it is much frequented by anglers. At Moneydarragh 
is a small lake where trout of the Alpine q^ecies are obtained 
in considerable quantities. 

The principal seats are Culdaff House, the residence of G. 
Young, Esq., J. P. It stands in a highly improved, well- 
wooded, and well-cultivated demesne, adjacent to the village ; 
Carthage House, Bedford, Grousehall, and Kindroyhead House. 

The village of Culdaff contains about 35 houses, and, as 
already stated, is situated on the river near the head of the 
bay. Fairs for the sale of cattle, sheep, and pigs, are held in 
it on the 10th of February, May, August, and November. A 
remarkable circumstance about these fairs is, that from time 
immemorial the days on which they fell have almoat invariably 
happened to be wet. The village has a Penny Post-office, and 
is the terminus of the mail car which passes through Moville 
from Derry. There are also in it a Constabulary Barrack and 
Dispensary, but they belong, as does the parish^to the Petty 

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CULDAFF, 137 



Sessions district of Malin, where the courts are always held. 
There is also a Loan Fund in the village of Culdaff. 

On the leading road from Cam to Moville, which intersects 
this parish, and about half way between them, a road turns off 
to the north leading to the village of Culdaff. This is the 
mail car line. The point of junction with the Moville road is 
called Dristeran, or, more commonly, Crossroads. There is here a 
Constabulary Barrack, Penny Post-office, Dispensary, and excel- 
lent National School. Fairs, similar to those of Culdaff, are 
held at Crossroads on the last Tuesday of February, May, 
August, and November, and are well supplied with stock, and 
largely attended by buyers. These fairs, though but recently 
established, promise to be eminently successful. 

The Parish Church is in the village of Culdaff. It is a neat 
structure, with a tower of comparatively recent erection. The 
living is a rectory, in the patronage of the Marquis of Donegall, 
and the tithes amount to ^361 lOs per annum. The glebe 
lands comprise 105 acres. 

The Eoman Catholic Chapel is at Bocan, nearly midway 
between Crossroads and Culdaff. It has been recently enlarged 
and improved, and is now a spacious and very handsome edifice. 
The side walls are high, and the whole seems to have been well 
and substantially built. The windows are Gothic, and very 
high, reaching ahnost to the eve. This chapel was first 
erected in 1806, and enlarged and improved in its present 
form in 1846. 

'^here are National Schools at Bocan, (male and female) Car- 
rowmore, Dristeran, and Ballyharry. The remains of crom- 
leachs, circles, and pagan temples, which exist so abundantly 
in this parish, have already been treated of. On a steep rock, 
which is nearly surrounded by the sea, near Carthage, are the 
remains of a very ancient castle or fort, said to have been 
erected by Prince Owen, from whom the peninsula derives its 
name. Near this is also an ancient cromleach in a very perfect 
state of preservation. This was not included in the account of 
the others. At Carrowmore are two very ancient stone crosses, 
and near them the plinth of another. Adjoining these crosses 
is a mound which was the site of an abbey or monastery. This 
monastery was in connexion with that at Cloncha. Both were 
exceedingly flourishing. It is related by tradition that a cer- 
tain monk, in a procession from the monastery at Carrowmore 
to that at Cloncha, forgot his Breviary until he was about i% 

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138 iNisnowEN. 



enter the door of the latter church, and that, turning round, 
he passed the word to the next, who likewise passed it to his 
successor, and so the intelligence was conveyed to Carrowmore, 
and the book forwarded from one to one till it was delivered to 
the owner, at a distance of three-fourths of a mile, so great 
Was the number of the monks at these monasteries. The land 
around the site of the ancient monastery at Carrowmore is 
more than usually fertile, as, indeed, is the case where similar 
institutions stood. 

The patron saint of Culdaff was St. TJltan, and a very 
ancient stone cross, believed to have been erected by him, stood 
at Falmore. The hand of time, however, crumbled that cross 
to fragments, but Mr. Nicholson, the proprietor of the property 
around which it stood, with praiseworthy generosity got a 
splendid Irish cross of stone erected on the spot a few 
years ago. 

The time at which the little altars which we find interspersed 
throughout the country were used, forms an epoch in the 
history of the Irish Church. Of these altars, some were 
erected in caverns by the sea-side, or in the recesses of the 
mountains ; and those places were selected as a security against 
the enemy or the persecutor. Others were erected and used 
when the Catholic religion began to be tolerated, and we find 
them situate in advantageous spots, where a shelter was to be 
had against the inclemency of the weather. 

These latter are of a type as to position, and structure, and 
size ; so that the following description of one will serve almost 
equally well for all. In this parish of Culdafij at a short 
distance from the public highway, there is a comfortable farm- 
house. The owner is a Protestant, but not a bigot. Beside 
it there is a neat and well-kept garden. In the rere of this 
garden, and not far distant, there is a rising ground, which 
commands a view of the ocean, and of the adjoining mountains 
— ^it is called the " Altar-Hill." On this elevated plateau there 
is a rock, not unlike the projecting cliflfs to be seen by the sea- 
side. It affords a shelter from the north wind, more than 
usually stormy in this cold locality. It is about ten feet high, 
and its overhanging top forms a sort of semicircular canopy. 
At its base there is a few loose stones piled together without 
any mortar or cement. They form a plane, about three feet 
high, about the same in length, and about two and one-half feet 
Broad. This is overgrown with ivy, and a little stunted thorn 

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CtJLDAPF, 139 

stands hard by. Such was the ^' little altar," Mass was often 
celebrated here ; and my guide told me it was only discontinued 
about the year 1805. 

These little altars must have been used in Ireland for at 
least two centuries. In the Synod of Kilkenny, held in 1642, 
it was ordained : — " That as priests were frequently obliged 
to celebrate the divine mysteries in the open air, those places 
should be selected which would appear most safe and becom- 
ing ; the altar, moreover, must be covered almost on all sides ; 
so that it may be sheltered thereby from the inclemency of the 
weather." The little altar, standing by a rock, was generally 
sheltered thereby from the wind ; but if it rained, or if there 
were a fall of snow during the time the priest was celebrating, 
then two young men out of the crowd formed a canopy over 
his head by a cloak kindly given by some one present. Two 
more formed a like shelter on his right side, and two more on 
the left. 

Near Muff, in the parish of CuldafF, at a distance of about 
two miles from the altar already described, I have seen four 
others closely adjoining each other. They were all built at the 
base of a projecting rock, and never had any covering over- 
head beyond what the rocks afforded. The reason why there 
were so many, and so near each other, was, that there might 
be a shelter from the wind in whatever direction it blew. On 
Carthage mountain, about half a mile from these, there is 
another little altar. At Carrowmore, in a most picturesque 
and beautiful glen, was another. This is not far from the ruins 
of an old Franciscan monastery, and within view of the two 
beautiful Irish crosses above described. The spot can scarcely 
be distinguished from the surrounding objects, for the altsu^ 
itself is gone. My guide told me that it is usual among 
many of the Catholics of the place, as they pass the spot, to 
uncover their heads and sometimes kneel and say a prayer. 
The altar, which was here, was used till towards the close of 
the last century. 

Those little altars have their traditions and their associations, 
which would form a history in themselves. They are hallowed 
spots. No wonder if the Catholic reveres them, and is jealous 
lest a profane or impious hand should disturb them. They are' 
a short but expressive history of the penal days. They are 
sometimes spared from a feeling of religious fear. The present 
is the age of material progress^ and the old altar has been 

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140 INISHOWE^. 



overturned in many places. The mountain was to be re- 
claimed, the altar stood in the way. The proprietor was a 
Protestant, and was " above the idle superstitions," as he said, 
of the more humble professors of his own faith. Still, in many 
places in Ulster, particularly in Inishowen, the old altars are 
standing to the present time. 

The parish of Culdaff was the birthplace of the celebrated 
comedian and dramatic writer, Macklin. Charles Macklin was 
bom in 1690 ; his jreal name was M*Laughlin, which he changed 
ty Macklin. He became a performer in the Lincoln's Inn Com- 
pany in 1725, and not long afterwards was tried foif killing 
another player in a quarrel, and found guilty of manslaughter. 
He had so repulsive a set of features that Quinn one day ex- 
claimed, " If God writes a legible hand that man is a villain." 
His greatest character was Shylock, his performance of which 
drew from the poet, Pope, this vay remarkable compliment-'-^ 

" This is the Jew 
That Shakespeare drew." 

Macklin wrote two plays. Love a la Mode, and the Man of the 
World, which are reputed to possess considerable merit, and 
are frequently performed, though very satirical on courtiers and 
the Scotch. His last appearance on the stage was in Covent 
Garden Theatre, January 10th, 1790, in the character of 
Shylock, at his own benefit, but his memoiy having failed him, 
he was unable to go on with the part. He died in 1797, at the 
advanced age of 107 years. 

In the parish of Culdaff there is a lone churchyard, em- 
bosomed among the mountains, and in sight of the ocean. In 
the centre of it stands an old church that was once Catholic, 
but afterwards passed into the hands of the stranger. The 
ground for some distance around it is more than usually fertile. 
— ^for an old monastery once stood there; This churchyard is 
surrounded by a wall, now fast mouldering to decay. There 
is free ingress to the beasts of the field ; and horses, and sheep, 
and cows are often seen grazing there, and treading down the 
graves. None have been buried there for the past 45 years, 
except the members of a few Protestant families who reside in 
the district. There are some curious gravestones that tell the 
history of other times. The inscriptions on some are partly 
illegible ; but on a clear day, and with care, you can decipher 
several. 

Opposite the church door there is a broad slab, of unpolished 

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CULDAFF. 141 



stone, covering a vault. On one side it has fallen off the wall 
on which it rested. There is no inscription. Few, perhaps 
not four persons at most, know who is buried there. It is the 
grave of an Irish Bishop — Dr. M'Colgan. 

Little is now known of the history of his life. Few could 
tell the year of his consecration, the time he died, his age, 
"where he was buried, and the circumstances of his death. 

Still he WW a great and holy prelate. He was descended 
from an old Irish sept, and bore the honoured name, and was 
a relative of a most distinguished p^est and scholar, who lived 
and died in a foreign land, but whose many learned and volu- 
minous works reflected an honour on the country of his birth, 
and adorned the religion of which he was a minister — I mean 
John Colgan, the learned author of the Acta Sarvctorvm 
Hihemiae, 

This good Bishop was consecrated in 1760. His predecessor, 
who had been appointed by Benedict XIV., had found it im- 
possible to reside in his See, and indeed this had been the case 
with many other Bishops of the Diocese of Derry for nearly 
the lapse of a century. The worthy prelate, at the beginning 
of his episcopacy, found religion but a wreck. The priests 
were few ; and of churches there were none. The ceremonial 
had disappeared. The faith alone remained standing ; it had 
taken hold in the hearts of the people, where the hand of per- 
secution was unable to follow it. For a number of years he 
performed the duties of the most hard-working priest, together 
with those of the episcopal oifioe. He married, baptised, 
attended the confessional, visited the sick, and discharged many 
other duties besides. He lived apart from the city, and the 
old Cathedral Church, and the thronged haunts of men. His 
residence was an humble white- washed cottage at Muff, Donegal. 
The late Thomas Doherty, Esq., Muff, was related to the 
family to which he belonged. The income of a bishop was 
small in those days. Years rolled on and bright hopes began 
to dawn. The revival of reli^on seemed to have already 
commenced, and the holy man looked on with a smile of com- 
placency. But his hopes were soon disappointed. The Catholic 
religion was tolerated, but the penal laws, like a dark pall, hung 
over the land. This Bishop, in the faithful discharge of his 
duties, had already become obnoxious to the authorities. They 
foimd a ready instrument in a friar, who, some time before, had 
been visited with canonical censuj'es. For safety the Bishop 

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142 INISSOWEK. 



quitted his residence, and took a last farewell of the little 
white- washed cottage, and sought an asylum among his native 
mountains at Oarndoagh. This Oamdoagh is in the parish of 
Donagh, and adjoins Cregamullen, in the parish of Clonmany, 
where the good Bishop was born. He remained two weeks 
concealed in the house of a liberal and kind-hearted Presby- 
terian, named Joseph Campbell. The military soon discovered 
the place of his retreat, but he had effected his estape as before 
related. Fatigue and anxiety of mind had already done their 
work. Two priests attended him on his death-bed. He 
breathed his last as they sat by his bedside; and his last words 
have been recorded by one of them. They were spoken in his 
native Irish, which he knew and loved so well. They were — 
" My soul to God and the Blessed Virgin." 

The place of his death was Omagh ; and the year 1769. 
Dr. M*Colgan's successor in the See of Derry was Dr. M*Davitte, 
also a native of Inishowen. 

Inside the walls of the church, and to the right hand side of 
the eastern window, there is an old gravestone bearing the fol- 
lowing inscription ; — 

" Erected by Torlagh O'Doherty, priest, to the memory of 
his brother Hugh— 1707." 

The following story is connected with the history of this old 
gravestone. On the public highway that leads from Oamdonagh 
to Moville, and about two miles distant from the former, the 
traveller must pass through the village of Cashel. Here he 
cannot fail to observe, hard by the roadside, a slated outhouse, 
with its quaint fantastic roof. A little farther down there is 
an orchard surrounded by a high wall. In the latter part of 
the 17th century a gentleman named Hart resided in the 
locality. The old slated edifice was his coach-house, and the 
orchard was his also. He was the landlord of the adjoining 
property, and had an only son who was to inherit that property 
and his name, and on whom he doted with paternal affection. 
In the neighbourhood lived a well-educated young man who 
was destined for the Catholic priesthood — ^the above-named 
Torlagh O'Doherty. Mr. Hart engaged him as a tutor for his 
son. The young man was obstinate and stiff-necked, as too 
oft^n happens in the case of young men who are too much 
indulged ; but he found in Torlagh O'Doherty a stem and 
determined instructor. One day the son complained to the 
father and mother of the treatment of his teacher ; the oonse- 



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CULDAFF. 143 



q\ience was that Torlagh was dismissed from his sitTiation as 
"tr-utor. After a few days, however, on reflection, Mr, Hart 
a.gain sent for him, and continued him in his service until the 
young man's education was complete. 

Years passed on ; Torlagh O'Doherty went to Spain, became 
Si student of the college of Salamanca, and was ordained a priest. 
During his residence in Spain he had excited both the sympathy 
and interest pf some of the highest families of the proud aristo- 
cracy of that sunny land — ^for he was an Irishman, and a 
candidate for the priesthood. 

Young Hart had obtained a commission in the army, seen 
much of foreign service, and gradually rose to a high rank in 
his profession. 

The Rev. Torlagh O'Doherty returned to Ireland, and was 
appointed a missionary priest in his native Barony of Iriishowen. 
Mr. Hart, after many years of foreign service, was returning 
to Ireland to revisit his native barony. He had arrived as 
far as the village of Muff. His attention was attracted by a 
crowd standing at the door of a house, now occupied by a 
man named John Bradley, publican. He inquired the cause 
why the crowd was collected there, and was told there was 
within a priest who was taken up for the crime of saying Mass. 
He went to see who he was, and at once recognised his old 
teacher — ^Torlagh O'Doherty. He took the officer in command 
aside, told him who he was, and explained the relation that 
existed between himself and the prisoner. Soon the priest was 
unbound, Mr. Hart taking upon himself the responsibility of 
the act. Mr. Hart afterwards took him into his own carriage, 
and they drove on to his father's house. The above story was 
told by an eye-witness to the late Very Rev, Dean M*Cafferty, 
of Camdonagh. 

Near the head of the Gleneely valley, and convenient to the 
base of a range of mountains, stands Grousehall. The name 
indicates the purpose for which it was originally intended — 
namely, as a shooting-lodge. It was built by an alderman of 
the city of Derry during the past century ; but, since that, has 
had numerous occupants. At one time the of&cers connected 
with th« camp at Baskill resided there. The old ruined walla 
at the rere of the mansion, at that time, before their fall, 
served as stables for the military horses. Among the many 
occupants of Grousehall at different times was, too, the vene- 
rable parish priest of Culdaff, the Rev. Mr. M*Devitte. In 

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144 INISHOWEN. 

181^ Grouseball was occupied by a gentleman named Norton 
Butler. Mr. Butler was agent of some property in the district^ 
among the rest, of the townland of Moneydaxragh, Money- 
darragh was the stronghold of smuggling in the district. If a 
still, malt, illicit spirits, or anything connected with its manu- 
facture was discovered in any townland, the inhabitants were 
liable to pay a penalty of XlOO, This sum was levied off the 
innocent as well as those guilty of transgressions^ against the 
revenue code. Never was there a better illustration of the 
difference between law and justice, which, sometimes, unfor- 
tunately, do not go hand in hand. This law was not only 
severe, but evidently unjust ; moreover, it also opened an 
avenue for the gratification of malice and vindictiveness. If a 
person in one townland entertained a grudge against his neigh- 
bour in another, or determined to injure him, all he had to do 
was to deposit something connected with illicit distillation in 
his field or garden, have it seized, and forthwith the whole 
townland were condemned to pay a fearful penalty. As the 
inhabitants of many districts were frequently reduced to 
the greatest poverty from the payment of such penalties, Mr. 
Butler used his utmost efforts to suppress illicit distillation. 
This rendered him obnoxious to the people of the locality, and 
a subscription was organised to realize a sum by which an 
assassin might be employed. It may be said that Mr. Butler 
should have left the suppression of illicit distillation to the 
constituted authorities, and have devoted his attention to other 
afiairs. Had Mr. Butler been moved by an appeal of the Chan- 
cellor of the Exchequer from his place in Parliament to sup- 
press illicit distillation, . as some of our local lords have lately 
been, to serve the purposes of party, then, indeed, would such 
objections hold good. But he was not. He consulted the in- 
terest of the people only, and strove to save them frbm utter 
ruin. 

The scene now shifts to a ridge of mountains separating the 
parish of Culdaff from that of Upper Moville. This ridge is 
called Crucknanonian — the daisy-clad hiU. But a portion of 
the public highway which leads from Culdaff to Eedcastle, and 
passes through this ridge of mountains is the most dreary and 
lonely spot to be found anywhere in the peninsula of Inishowen. 
For a distance of nearly three miles there is not a human habi- 
tation. The ascent up this mountain road is precipitous, and 
it was formed when vehicles were not much in use. 

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CtJLDAFT. 145 



On the eastern side of this mountain there is a valley, on 
which, for the greater part of the day, the rays of the sun 
never desccDd. There are only a few patches ci cultivated 
ground. The occupants of this ground drag out a miserable 
existence from the precarious support which the barren soil 
affords. Here at the same time lived four young men, Peter, 
James, Dan, and William Magennis. Hardy and stalwart as 
mountain peasantry for the most part are, their manly vigour 
was- increased by constant rambling over their native moun- 
tains. Those who have seen them say they were tall, athletic, 
and of handsome features. Instead of cultivating the miserable 
patch of land which the father occupied, they were generally 
found poaching gam« or smuggling, and early in their lives they 
became members of secret societies. 

On this same east side of the mountain, and when you have 
descended on the road to the Foyle, at the distance of a quarter 
of a mile, the road takes a sudden turn. For a man intent on 
committing a dark deed of blood a more solitary place could 
hardly be selected. There was no house in view, and there 
was a cavern hard by which affords a place of concealment to 
the assassin. 

One day Mr. Butler was seen making his way over this lone 
mountain, riding on horseback, and he carried behind him a 
saddle-bags, on his way to Derry. One of the Magennises was 
aware he was to pass that way. He lay concealed in the cave 
at the spot where the road takes a sudden turn. This was 
James, and it has been supposed that he had then and there 
with him a young man, named M*Conalogue, as companion, 
from Mr. Butler's immediate neighbourhood. As the rider 
passed he took deliberate aim and fired. Aim was taken at 
the horse, which fell, and the rider was safe. Presently he 
heard a voice from the cave ; it was Magennis's, saying, " This 
was but a warning ; but for your decent wife I would have 
killed yourself." James Magennis then fled. A small fishing- 
boat from Glengad conveyed him on board a ship, by which he 
escaped to America. 

On the north side of Grousehall, and at the distance of 200 
yards from the residence, there is an old ruin. This was a 
dwelling-house at the time of which I write. On an evening 
in the beginning of June, in the year 1816, a young man 
entered this house and asked permission to cast a few bullets ; 
the request was readily granted. On the following day, at four 

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146 INISHOWEN. 



o'clock in the afternoon, two young men were seen descending 
the hill which overlooks Groiisehall residence. These were 
. William and Dan Magennis. The country people were busy 
in their daily avocations — ^some in the field, others cutting 
turf in the bog. They (Magennises) assumed no disguise- 
attempted no concealment. They were armed with guns and 
provided with a bayonet, and the bullets they used were those 
manufactured the night before. 

Mr. Butler had dined, and was taking his evening walk. In 
the rear of Grousehall is a garden, which is surrounded by a 
high wall, now mouldering to decay. There is a good view of 
the mountains that overlook the place. Mr. Butler was walk- 
ing beside this wall and smoking. - The Magennises were com- 
ing down towards him in company. Coolly and deliberately 
they approached the spot ; one took his gun in hand, aimed, 
and fired. Mr. Butler did not fall. Then the other did the 
same ; yet their victim did not fall. They then closed in upon 
him, and one took the bayonet and thrust it in his abdomen. 
Mr. Butler was a strong, powerful man, and he struggled vio- 
lently with the assassins. Some of the men who were cutting 
turf in the bog, and who heard the firing, and saw the struggle 
which was going on, left off their work, and ran at their 
utmost speed to his assistance. They were too late. Butler 
tried to wrench the bayonet from them, but immediately 
received a second stab in the thigh. He fell. The bayonet 
had passed through his thigh, and its point was found stuck in 
the ground, thus literally pinning him to the earth. After he 
was lifted, a little boy ran down his finger in the hole which it 
made in the ground. 

The two assassins,' seeing that their purpose was complete, 
were seen making their way over the same hill whence they 
came. Mr. Butler was brought into his residence ; the wound 
was found to be mortal. He died the following morning at 
eight o'clock. It is said that the evening this occurrence hap- 
pened the Bev. Mr. O'Kane, P.P. of Culdaff, was dining in 
Grousehall. Certain it is that he had at least visited him od 
that fatal night. 

Mr. Butler. stated all the circumstances of the murder in his 
dying depositions, and the names of the young men who per- 
petrated it. Warrants were issued for their apprehension. They 
managed for some time to evade arrest. Dan was sheltered 
in different parts of the parishes of Moville, Culdaff, and 

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CULDAFF. 147 

Donagh for some time. The peasantry did so, not from any 
sytapathy in their crimes, but from an innate reluctance which, 
they entertained against delivering any one up to the laws 
which at the time, not as now, were one-sided and partially 
administered. They were on this account generally not 
respected, and it was considered meritorious to evade them. 
The following instance will more fully explain what is meant. 
Not far from where the murder occurred there is a certain 
little fair town, and convenient to it was situate the house of a 
yoeman. In the year 1798 two tinkers, father and son, called 
at this house one evening. An altercation arose between the 
young man and the yoeman. The yeoman lodged a complaint, 
and next day the father and son were brought before two 
magistrates, who sentenced each to Receive fifty lashes, though 
the son alone was guilty, and that of a trifling assault. A 
wheel car was set on end in the public street, and the son was 
bound to it. He received his , fifty lashes, but never winced. 
He was then unbound and the father tied up. Here the son 
interposed ; desired his father should be liberated, that he 
would be permitted to take his place, and receive the other 
fifty lashes. This was refused. It was the fair day of the 
town, 24th June, and a large crowd was assembled. Hearing 
the denial of the son's request, the people became indignant, 
rushed through the barriers, liberated the father and son, and 
carried them off in triumph. 

Hunted about from place to place, Dan Magennis sought 
refuge among the peasantry of Glenagannon, which is situated, 
as already described, about two miles from the town of Carn- 
donagh. The distance from Glenagannon to the place where 
Magennis originally resided is about five miles, and in all 
Inishowen there is not a more dreary spot. It is one uninter- 
rupted mountain range ; pleasing perhaps to the eye of the 
tourist or the lover of sublime mountain scenery ; but in all 
this distance there is not even the smallest patch of cultivated 
land nor any human habitation. There are two large lakes 
frequented by the disciples of Walton ; besides these a few 
smaller lakes. There is also a wide extended quagmire, called 
by the people of the district " The Sheskan Ban." No one 
would be safe to cross this unless one well acquainted with the 
locality. Magennis roamed those mountains during the day 
time, and in whatever direction he turned himself he com- 
manded a good view of the soldiers' approach. One day in 

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148 INISHOWEK. 



•ummer he had been traversing this mountain range as usual. 
When evening set in he was seen making his way to the town- 
land of Grortayarn, and entering the house of a widow named 
Mooney. He partook of some refreshments, and being fatigued 
from the exertions of the day wished to retire to sleep. He 
■lept by the fireside, with his clothes on. He previously 
Examined his pistols ; they were charged. He places them 
under the pillow on which his head reclined. Widow Mooney 
had retired to a little adjoining room. He is soon fast asleep. 
George Balfour, another of his companions, quietly opens the 
door and approaches the spot where Magennis lay. He exa- 
mined the well-defined, manly, and handsome features, which 
were strongly marked with the traces of care. Occasionally 
there is a nervous twitching and a spasmodic movement of the 
muscles. He eyes him intently for a few minutes, and finds he 
is fast asleep. Quietly and stealthily he removes the pistols 
from beneath his head, takes out the flints and pours oil into 
the barrels. He opens the door, makes his escape, and pro- 
ceeds to Culdaff House, the residence of Mr. Young. Mr. 
Young and a number of yoemen, accompanied by Balfour, 
proceed to the house where Magennis slept. The widow 
Mooney is not yet in bed, her son has been out late, and she is 
waiting till he returns. She hears a noise, it is the measured 
tread of military men. She is nervous and alarmed. The 
expiring fire emits a faint glimmering light, which she endea- 
vours to extinguish. She approached the spot where Magennis 
lay, and with a tremulous voice whispers into his ear to be up 
and away, for she apprehends danger. Instantly the door is 
opened. Mr. Young and the yeomanry enter. They receive 
orders to arrest the outlaw. They hesitate and are afraid, for 
the strength, and determination, and frequent threats of 
Magennis were no secret to the public. Seeing them hesitate, 
Mr. Young exclaimed, " Fear not, the pistols can do no harm." 
He is arrested, strongly handcuffed, and dragged off to Culdaff 
House. 

At the distance of about 200 yards from Grousehall, and on 
the nortli-east side of the house, there are dilapidated walls 
which were inhabited as a dwelliDg-house by a man named 
M'Conalogue, in the year 1816. This man had a son who was 
young, tall, handsome, and of commanding appearance. Unfor- 
tunately, however, he seems to have been a member of a con- 
f edwracj whose ramifications were too extensive at the time of 

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CULDAFF. 149 



which we write. He was, besides, an associate and confidant 
of the Mageunises. After he became a member of the secret 
society, and their companion, it is said he was concerned in a 
robbery with them, but, unlike the Magennises, M^Oonalogue 
never imbrued his hands in the blood of his fellow-man. One 
day, at a funeral, an altercation took place, in which, unfortu- 
nately, young M'Conalogue was engaged, and for which a war- 
rant was issued for his apprehension. On another occasion he 
assaulted Mr. Butler at a still-house, and for this, too, a war- 
rant was issued against him. The execution of both warrants 
was entrusted to the Eev. Mr. Chichester, then the magistrate 
of the parish. One day Mr. Chichester and the yoemanry 
proceeded to Grousehall to execute the warrant for his arrest. 
M^Con^logue seeing them approach the house, made his escape, 
and proceeded in the direction of the little village of Carahunny. 
Here, through a feeling of triumph, he turned round and dis- 
charged his gun in the direction in which Mr. Chichester was 
coming. Some say he took deliberate aim at that gentleman ; 
others, that the gun was not loaded with ball at all, and that he 
merely fired into the air. On the trial it was sworn by two 
female witnesses that M'Conalogue, hearing of the guard's 
approach, put some powder only into the gun, in their presence, 
and that he fired it into the air near his own door. Another 
witness swore that he did take deliberate aim, and that the ball 
discharged from the gun tore a portion of the turf near the 
spot where witness stood. Certain it is, however, Mr. Chi- 
chester was unhurt, and that the jury found the prisoner 
guilty. He was sentenced to be hanged. 

^A general sympathy has always been manifested for the 
unfortunate end of this unhappy young man. The circum- 
stances of the case tended much to excite this feeling. He was 
youthful, tall, handsome, and, as we have already said, not 
guilty of murder. After the execution his body was handed 
over to his relatives. He was buried in the Catholic church- 
yard of Bocan ; no stone marks his grave, but the spot can be 
pointed out to this day. It is at the entrance of the sacristy 
door. A strange female, with wild look and dishevelled hair, 
was often seen after the execution to visit this lone churchyard, 
and spend hours weeping over his grave. This was a young 
female who was present at Liflford on the day of the execution, 
and became so enraptured by his beauty and personal appeor- 



y Google 



150 INISHOWEK. 



ance, that she became a raying maniac through the influence of 
love and unbounded grief. 

On the east side of Lough Conn there is a lonely mountain 
valley, named Meenamaddy. At the time of which we write, 
there lived there a rather notorious person named Shane 
M*Eleney. He is said to have been the associate oi outlaws 
and desperadoes. At the place of this person, Wm. Magennis 
sought a shelter, and considered himself secure amid the swamps 
and morasses of that bleak locality. He assisted M'Eleney in 
th« little of field labour which that person attended to during his 
stay. One day he was engaged in cutting turf, in the afternoon 
of which. M*Eleney went away on the pretence of looking after 
some other business. In the evening he had not returned, and 
Magennis being tired went early to bed. He had scarcely fallen 
asleep when Mr, Carey, a magistrate, who lived at some dis- 
tance, arrived with a special guard and apprehended him in the 
house of Shane M'Eleney. He was immediately lodged in 
gaol, whither Dan was sent a short time previous. Their sub- 
sequent history is easOy told. They were tried at the assizes, 
found guilty of Mr. Butler^s murder, and executed. It was a 
sad sight, two brothers convicted of the murder of the same 
person, and both executed for the same terrible crime ; it shows 
the foUy and wickedness of being connected with secret societies, 
2MB well as of being instrumental in carrying out their orders 
and designs ; and testifies to the truth of the good old maxim, 
" Evil commimications corrupt good manners." Nor waa this 
all, the treachery of Balfour was not a secret to the members 
of the wicked confederacy to which he belonged ; moreover, it 
was feared that he was about to turn approver, and his doom 
was accordingly sealed. One evening in the month of August^ 
1816, Balfour, accompanied by another young man, walked out' 
from Carndonagh along the Glenagannon road. They were on 
. their way home. It is supposed that Balfour was induced to 
come into the town on that particular evening, and tiiere is very 
little doubt that the person who accompanied him knew all that 
was to happen. To the east of the town of Carndonagh, and 
at a distance of a quarter of a mile, there is a bridge. It is 
called Glenagannon bridge, and* spans the river already noticed, 
which runs through that glen. The parties travelled along, 
and when within a short distance of the bridge Balfour's com- 
panion began to whistle a tune. There can be no doubt that 
the tune, though not a party one, was intended to give intima- 

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CULDAFF. 161 



tion of their approach. Just as they came to the end of the 
bridge, a man, who lay in ambush, started up, and in the 
twinkling of an eye dealt Balfour a stunning blow with some 
blunt heavy instrument. He reeled and fell. The same party 
immediately drew a sword, which he ran through the body of 
his victim. A rope was then procured and tied around his neck, 
and he was pulled into a grass field adjoining, on the north side 
of the bridge. A multitude of the initiated had by this time 
assembled, armed with clubs, swords and daggers. A multitude 
there was ; some' say five hundred in number, all armed as 
described, for the purpose of taking away the life of one un- 
fortunate and faithless wretch. By the rope tied around his 
neck they dragged him like a dog along the grass, to the edge 
of a flax dam at a considerable distance from the road ; here 
the commander stood superintending, till every one of that 
valiant body inflicted a blow, a stab, or a sabre cut on the corpse 
which lay before them. They next threw it into the dam, and 
their hideous and disgusting business was at an end. It is 
said that the blood}'- trail was discernable along that grass field, 
notwithstanding the rains and snows, for several years after 
that fatal night. 

New troubles now awaited the members of the confederation, 
they feared arrest, they feared each other, and many made a 
hasty and precipitate retreat. They went chiefly to America. 
Even there misfortune befel them ; many got sudden and 
violent deaths. The jail was filled with those who remained ; 
society was in a state of ferment from assize to assize, and many 
hearths'were made desolate by the fearful incidents of that 
terrible time. 

It is to be feared too that the military authorities who com- 
manded the district at the time were more zealous than discreet 
in their exertions to discover the parties implicated in the crime, 
for it was sworn by a witness, named Alexander M*Clure, that 
Major Dawson offered him a large sum of money if he would 
swear indiscriminately against a number of the accused ; the 
result of which was that they were all liberated, and further 
prosecutions abandoned. Previous to this, however, two persons, 
named Bradley and M*Eleney, were executed for participation 
in the mmrder of Balfour. 

In the memorable revolution of 1688, the inhabitants of 
Inishowen were chiefly attached to the cause of their king, and 
levies were made here for the purpose of strensjhening the 

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152 IKISHOWEK. 



army of Jamfts. A young man of the townland of Mtrff, parish 
of Culdaff, was of lie number called. He was a very well 
educated young man, and was soon appointed secretaiy to 
CJeneral Sarsfield, a distinctign which, on account gf his charac- 
ter and education, he well merited. His name was Henry 
Doherty. He accompanied Sarsfield at the battle of the Boyne 
and the siege of Limerick ; and when at that memorable siege 
Irish blood was spilled profusely, and the valour of her 
sons was surpassed only by the heroism .of the daughters 
of Limerick; and when the hitherto victorious army of 
WHJiam quailed before the indomitable defenders of those 
historic walls ; and when, at last, the belligerents came 
to terms regarding the capitidation of the city, the articles of 
the treaty of Limerick were drawn up in the Irish language, 
by Henry Doherty, as secretary to the general commanding, 
Patrick Sarsfield, Earl of Lucan. How soon this important 
treaty was violated by the Williamites is well known. After 
the capitulation of Limerick, Doherty returned to his native 
home, where his descendants have resided down to the present 
year, when the last member of the family (also named Henry 
Doherty) emigrated to America. 

Owing to the disturbed state of the district in 1314 there 
was a military encampment at Baskill, in this parish. It 
numbered about 300, including officers and men. • The spot is 
j)ointed out to this day. It was below the public highway, and 
near the Culdaff river. 

The public may learn, perhaps with surprise, that a cele- 
brated French nobleman, the Duke de Broglio, is not only of 
Irish descent, but that his forefathers hail from Culdaff, and 
the townland of Lisdargan. The Duke has been written to on 
the subject, and he says that records contained in the fcimily 
archives testify this, and he is not a little proud of being the 
descendant of an Irish sept. In Ireland the name was Bradley. 
In Cloncha churchyard there is an old gravestone bearing that 
name. Perhaps some relative of the great Duke is buried 
there. The father of the present Duke sent an autograph letter 
to the late Denis Bradley, of Coleraine, on some matters of 
business, in which he refers with pride to his Irish origin and 
name. I may observe that Denis Bradley was married to a 
sister of the late Mr. Mulholland, of Derry. Two relatives of 
the Duke live yet in the same townland, Stephen Butler and 
Andrew Gillen. ^ , 

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mtt^jM. 163 

It tt^as from the Imshowen coaAt that Thomas t)at(iy M*Ghee, 
of Young Ireland notoriety, effected his escape to America in 
1848. He assinned the dr^s of a clerical student, changed 
Ills name, came to Berry, and from that to Culdaff, where he 
remained for a short time concealed in a farm-house not far 
from Kindroyhead. A passage was secured for him in one of 
tbe Berry emigrant ships, and when the vessel came along the 
Culdaff shore a little boat put to sea and conveyed M*Ghe«e on 
board. Strange the yicissitudes of life! In 1847 Barcy 
M*Ghee was a violent partizati of the Young Ireland faction ; 
in 1848 he is an outlaw seeking ait asylum among the moun- 
tains of Culdaff; and now, in 1867, we find him a Canadian 
legislator. 

Outside the north sid^wall of Cloncha church there is a 
tombstone which, the inscription tells us, was erected to the 
memory of the B^v. Mr. Elwood. This clergyman had attained 
nearly the patriarchal age ot 100 years. He was 61 years 
Hector of Cloncha, and died in 1785. The monument was 
erected by his successor, who that successor was does not appear, 
but from the date of its erection it would appear to be the Rev- 
Mr. Chichester, the father of the present Lord O'Neill, of 
Shane's Castle. There are many traditions still extant among 
the people of Culdaff regarding this venerable old man. He 
was said to be very charitable, and his good wife was in the 
habit of making large webs of woollen cloth, whieh she distri- 
buted among the poor of the district. He lived at Bedford, a 
spot possessing scenery as beautiful as any celebrated in Scott's 
Lady of the Lake. 

A very valuable work of art was discovered in the parish 
of Culdaff a few years ago by a countryman, when engaged 
one day in his field operations. He turned up something of 
the form of a horse shoe, which lay on a flat stone, and was 
lightly covered with clay. At first he had a mind to throw it 
away, as something valueless ; on reflection he took it home, 
and he afterwards showed it to a ragman, who offered him 
half-a-crown for it. The countryman, then, for the first time 
began to think it might be of some value. He kept it and 
showed it to a gentleman of experience, by whom it was for- 
warded to the Boyal Irish Academy, and in return he received 
the handsome sum of £6. It was deposited in the museum of 
the institution. In the opinion of the members of the academy, 
to whom it was shown, it dates to a remote antiquity, probably 

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154 INISHOWEK. 

beyond the Christian era, and exhibits a high degree of art It 
was a gold fibula, and used as a cloak-fastener. 

It maj not be out of place to mention the following obser- 
vations with regard to this valuable institution. The Royal 
Irish Academy was founded in 1785 ; its origin was small at 
first. In 1787 the book of Ballymote was presented to it by 
Chevalier O'Gorman. In 1789 the book of Leaciin was pro- 
cured through the Abbe Kearney ; and, as already observed, a 
great portiou of it was translated by the Rev. John McLaugh- 
lin, a native of Glentougher. In 1831 the Annals of the Four 
Masters were secured through Dr. Petrie : this was the first 
valuable addition it received. The cross of Cong was presented 
through the late lamented Professor M'Cullough, of Trinity 
College. Indeed for a long time the opinion prevailed that 
Ireland possessed no works of ancient art of any real value. 
"When Dr. Petrie first endeavoured to secure the remains of 
Irish art, he was told — " Surely you do not mean to siiy the 
Irish knew anything of the arts of civilization before the 
arrival of the Euglish." Time has proved the falsity of this 
opinion. The museum of the Royal Irish Academy, through 
the praiseworthy and indefatigable exertions of many men of 
eminence, such as Sir William Wilde, Dr. Petrie, Dr. Greaves, 
the late Dr. O'Donovan, and Professor Curry, possesses a large 
and valuable collection of works on Irish art. Much praise is 
due to the Commissioners of Public Works and to the Shannon 
Commissioners, but above all to the Directors of the Ordnance 
Survey, through whose exertions many of . those works have 
been secured. A fund is now placed at the disposal of the 
council of the Royal Irish Academy, by which they can engage 
the services of the constabulary in purchasinir, at its full value, 
any work of art that may be got in the country. 

While speaking of antiquities, we may state that we have 
lately examined an Ogham monument in the parish of Culdajff. 
There is the cross within the circle, which is almost peculiar to 
all Ogham monuments. . The cross is nearly the same as ones 
to be found in the illuminations of the Book of Kells. O'Con- 
ner, of Belanagar, held that all Ogham monuments were of the 
pagan period. Now this opinion would appear not to be cor- 
rect, else why find the cross on an Ogham monument ? This 
monument has the stem line and the four different groups of 
incised strokes. First there is the groups of lines to the left ; 
'second, the groups of lines to the right of the edge ; third, 

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CtTLDAFir* 165 



longer strokes crossing obliquely ; and fonrtli, conall notches on 
the edge itselt It reads thus : — Nocati maqud magui Ret, 
" That is, the stone of Nocat, the son of Mac Reithe." Now, 
we may observe the word Mac Reith occurs in the Book of 
Leacan. It may also be observed that Ogham monuments were 
used first as sepulchral monuments, and secondly as boundaries 
of properties. 

From the " TJUter Visitation Book" preserved among the 
MSS. in Trinity College, Dublin, in 1622, we find Culdaff was 
written Coldaugh. In the Pi-otestant church at that time 
Culdaff and Moville were one parish, the minister of which 
was Robert Kean, A.M. To this is annexed an observation 
from the bishop. " He also discharges the cure of Coldaugh 
as occasion is offered, there being one English family in the 
parish." 

I may observe, in this place, that Eugene O'Doherty, who 
was consecrated bishop of Derry in 1664, was a native of 
Inishowen^ From the following document, taken from the 
Barberini archives, it appears he was an Augustinian monk, 
was of noble origin, and succeeded Rory O'Donnell. His suc- 
cessor was Redmond CGallagher. " Die Lunae Junii 1554, 
referente Reverendissimo Carpensi, sua sanctitas providit ecele- 
siee Derensi in regno Hibermea vacantl per obitum Rmici 
Ydomnael, extra Romanam curiam defuncti^ de persona Eugenii 
Odochartaid Abbatis monasterii Cellae nigrae et Derensis ordinis 
Sancti Augustini, de nobile genere ex utroque parente." 

The first parish priest of Culdaff for the past century whose 
name we could obtain was the Rev. Mir. Cramsey, a native of 
the parish^ The following ai*e his successors in regular order, 
namely : — First, the Rev. Mr. Orr, a native of the parish, who 
died about eighty-four years ago ; he was succeeded by the 
Rev. Manasses Divine, a native of couuty Derry, who lived at 
Cashel, and remained only a few years in the parish ; he was 
succeeded by the Rev. Denis O'Donnell, a native of the town- 
land of Gortaherin, in the parish of Donagh, and who died 
about sixty years ago ; he was succeeded by the Rev. Mr. 
O'Kane, a native of the county Derary, who lived at Ballina- 
gran for many years, and about 1824 exchanged with the Rev. 
Mr. Doherty for Moville, where he died ; he was succeeded by 
the Rev. Gerald Doherty, a native of liFrney, who lived only 
about one year in Culdaff ; he was succeeded by the Rev. Mr, 
O'Connor, who died in 1831, and was buried in his native 

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156 INISHOWBK. 



parish in county Derry ; he was succeeded by the Rev. James 
M*Devitt, the present parish priest. Before the erection of the 
chapel mass was celebrated four Sundays in succession, and 
alternately, at each of the little altars. 



Chapter XV. — Lower Moville, 

From the parish of CnldafF we will proceed to Lower Moville. 
For a part of the way the road passes along Brady Glen, which, 
in ancient times, belonged to the M*Dermotts, who, in the 
Annals of the Four Masters, are styled the lords of Bradyglen, 
and the princes of hospitality. There is a bridge in this glen 
named Friar's Bridge, from a tradition that a friar Wcis drowned 
in crossing the river at that place. T will take occasion as we 
travel along this road to relate the following story, and before 
I begin I simply say that every item it contains is perfectly 
true. Comment would be superfluous ; let the facts speak for 
themselves. 

It was a cold day in December. The wind blew from the 
north, and swept over the hills, accompanied with sleet-like 
rain. A number of men were busily engaged making a new 
road along the ridge of a wild mountain side. It was a bleak 
dreary spot. There were little signs of vegetation, even the 
heather lacked its usual purple hues, and the stunted grass 
scarce appeared above the surface of the soil The screaming 
of the sea-birds and the flight of the wild geese to the moun- 
tains bespoke an impending storm. These poor fellows had 
been working all day amid the pitiless pelting hail, badly fed 
and badly clothed. 

" For whom are you working on such a day, and in such a 
place," inquired a stranger who was passing by. There was a 
low subdued whisper, " shall we tell," said they. " Yes," said 
, one, who appeared better instructed than the others, and acted 
as spokesman ; then, turning to the stranger, he said, " it is for 
our landlord." 

" Does your landlord make the road at his own expense," 
said the stranger. " No," was the reply, " he is paid for it." 
" Is he road contractor, then," asked the stranger. " He is 
not the nominal contractor ; but he is after all the real con- 
tractor. His man of business, Bernard, Doherty, is the nominal 
contractor, but it is for his master he acts." 

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LOWER MOVILLB. 157 



" A curse on that same Barney," said one of the crowd, " he 
lias made many a home desolate in Glenroan." 

" Are you well paid," said the stranger, " for this work." 
" Nothing," was the reply. " These roads, for the most 
part, are made by duty days ; but we don't so much complain 
of this (for the road will serve ourselves) as to be obliged to 
assist in cutting down hills and building walls near our land- 
lord's residence, which serve no public end, but merely orna- 
ment the demesne." " And," said the stranger, " are those 
^vorks paid for by the public ?" " Yes," said the other, " and 
the landlord's man of business is the contractor for them also." 
** How does it happen that such things are tolerated ; I really 
cannot comprehend them ?" " Oh, sir, it is quite simple. If 
any gentleman wishes to have his demesne beautified by some 
additional fences, or the approaches to his residence improved, 
he has only to ask the assistance of the neighbouring gentry, 
and the job can be easily manufactured, for the associated cess- 
payers are usually taken from such a class as are known to be 
the tools of the gentry. The great public thoroughfares are 
neglected, and what is worse, when the ordinary contractors 
have their work completed there is great difficulty in having 
the work approved ; but as for the improvements that aflfect 
the interests of the gentry there is no such obstacle." 

" Really," said the stranger, " this is too bad." "Oh, sir, I 
can tell you worse, but I would not wish it were told on me. 
Our landlord is a needy man, his debts amount to a large sum. 
Now, if he wants money, his custom is to subdivide the estate. 
He says it is in order to improve it, but the real object is to 
put money into his own pocket. He will take a few acres 
from the farm of the poor man and add them to the farm of the 
rich neighbour, receive £5 to the pound rent for this, and put 
the money in his pocket." 

" Positively," said the stranger, " what you tell me is almost 
incredible. Do duty days prevail to any extent ?" " Well, 
sir," said the other, " they are claimed by most of the resident 
landlords, but duty-hens are discontinued. But, I'll tell you, 
sir, a thing that happened about them before they were done 
away with. One day Mr. Maxwell, the magistrate who lives 
over yonder, was walking with an English gentleman who came to 
visit him, in front of the hall door, and one of the tenants, 
Jeamie M*Daid, came up to them, took a hen from under his 
coat, and apologised for being so late by saying, he waited till 

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158 INISfiOWBK. 



she would lay, but he hoped she would be in time for the 
dinner." 

Until 1788 Moville formed but one parish, but it was then 
divided into the parishes of Upper and Lower Moville. lu 
the Homan CathoUc division, however, the whole as yet forms 
but one parish. Lower Moville is bounded on the north "by 
the Atlantic Ocean, on the east by Lough Foyle, and on the 
west by Culdaff. It contains 15,950 acres. Population, 5,192. 
Much of the land is cold and of rather inferior quality ; the 
inhabitants engage themselves with fishing fully as much as 
agriculture. The coast of the parish, which extends from ' 
Glenagivn^ on the north-west around Inishowen Head and 
along the Foyle to the town of Moville, is singularly bold and 
rocky. Doyle, in his Tours in Ulster, says : — " Inishowen 
Head is a place of great interest, and commands magnificent 
coast and sea views. From this the coast runs westward to 
Culdaff Bay, and for about eight miles is much varied by steep 
and lofty cliffs, against which the Atlantic breaks with great 
fury. The water is very deep, from ten to fifteen fathoms up 
to the base of the cliffs. The same remarkable variation in 
the ebb and flow of the tide, observed on the coast of Antrim, 
occurs here also." I may state that the tides move similarly 
from Bushmills yi Antrim to Bloody Foreland Point in Done- 
gal. Mr. Doyle goes on to say : — " Outiside, a line east and 
west, distant two miles from the shore, the line of fio<Al sets 
east six hours, and ebbs six hours to the west ; but within that 
line the stream turns at half flood to the westward, and at half 
ebb to the eastward, a phenomen<m of great advantage in navi- 
gating this coast." Around Moville the land is in a good state 
of cultivation, and there are some handsome residences in the 
neighbourhood. Between Shrove Head on the one side and 
the point of Magilligan on the Londonderry coast on the other, 
is the entrance to Lough Foyle. This extensive inlet is admit- 
tedly one of the best of our Irish harbours. It is remarkably 
well sheltered, especially from the westerly winds, and affords 
safe anchorage for ships of the largest tonnage in all kinds of 
weather. It is to the facilities for trade which this lough 
affords, seconded by the energy and enterprise of her ii^abi- 
tants, that the city of Derry owes her increasing commercial 
proq)eri1y. The channel which lies near the Inishowen coast 
is all along indicated by buoys and lights, and at Shrove Head 
are lighthouses which have been constructed by the Ballast 

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LOWER MOVILLE. 159 



3Board to guard against shipwrecks on the " Touns," sand banks 
xvhich lie beyond the entrance to the lough, and which will be 
noticed by and bye. Herrings, sole, salmon, and oysters are 
met with abundantly in Lough Foyle, but the Hon. the Irish 
Society of London claim a several fishery and right to every 
living thing within it, nay, to the very mud and sand which lie 
at its bottom, to the exclusion of all interference on the part of 
the inhabitants of its shores. This anomalous claim is founded 
on a Charter, which, they say, was granted them by James I., 
and renewed at the Restoration. 

Convenient to the ruins of the old castle of the O'Dohertys 
at the northern extremity of the parish, the English have 
erected a fortress, and this, with a battery at Magilligan oh the 
opposite side, commands the entrance to the lough. The 
Greencastle fortress consists of a battery, tower, and magazine, 
and there is accommodation within it for forty-two men and 
four officers. The Magnetic Telegraph Company have an office 
at Greencastle, from which messages are transmitted to any part 
of the United Kingdom, &c. Here are also stations of the 
Pilots and Tide-waiters of the port of Derry, and a Coastguard 
station ; there is also a station of the Coastguards at Port 
Kennego. 

The following fairy tale is related regarding these coasts ; the 
towns are even yet considered *^ gentle J' 

Manannan M^Lir, the Irish Neptune, lies buried in the 
Tonn Banks. His spirit sallies from them at intervals. Many 
shipwrecks have occurred here. The roar of the Tbnns is 
heard several miles off when a storm is impending. They form 
one of the celebrated " Three waves of Erinn." The wave of 
the North, (here) the wave of Rury, (in Dundrum Bay) and 
the wave of Cliona, (off Cape Clear.) Whenever Cuchulain 
smote his shield, the three waves lifted up their voices and 
answered. 

Hosts of fairies had their abode around these coasts, in mid- 
channel, and along the Scottish shores. Many years ago a 
young man of the O'Dohertys, of TuUagh, in Clonmany, set out 
with a view of paying his addresses to a young lady of the 
name of O'Kane, who lived near Magilligan, in the County 
Derry, and whose fame for beauty and accomplishments had 
extended over hfUf the province. O'Doherty took with him his 
brother as companion, with a train of twenty chosen young men 
aa attendants — ten to each. Railway conveyance has, even yet, 

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160' INISHOWBN. 



but penetrated slightly the mountain fastnesses of Inishowen. 
la those days, needless to say, there was not an inch of railway 
in our peninsula nor in the county Derry, nor, for that matter, 
in all Ireland. Vans and cars were also unheard o^ here at 
least ; and as our travellers had to cross an arm of the sea, they 
did not avail themselves of their fleet, well-trained roadsters. 
They set out on foot across the country. Arrived at Tapal 
Moule, near Greencastle, they determined to take up {keir 
lodging for the night, as it was then too late to cross the ferry. 
Supper was ordered, and our suitor told his brother that while 
the meal was in preparation he would retire to the old ruin 
behind the inn to say a prayer, for he was of a religious turn 
of mind. Time wore speedily on ; he did not return as soon 
as expected ; so *the company sat down to their meal in his 
absence. He came at last, and, to his great consternation, 
found them dead — ^all dead save his brother, who was badly 
injured in the melee which had just occurred. He demanded 
to be informed of the cause of the terrible catastrophe which 
had just occurred. The brother rebuked him very sharply for 
spending so much of his time in devotion — a habit which, he 
said, he had had to complain of on various other occasions — ^but 
at last explained that he believed they were under the influence 
of some malignant spell, as the young men, when seated around 
the supper table, began to contend about some very trifling 
affair. From words they came to blows ; nor did the conflict 
cease till each had killed each ; and he himself, in endeavouring 
to pacify them, received the injuries before mentioned. They 
now proceed to a doctor to have the sufferer's wounds dressed, 
and to obtain his opinion regarding their effects. The doctor 
performed his office, and told the sufferer to keep clear of 
excitement, and guard against whatever might shock the ner- 
vous system, otherwise the consequences might be fatal. On 
their way back, and while crossing a bit of moorland, a hare 
started most unexpectedly from beside them, and ran across 
the heather. The patient was startled ; he swooned and died. 
Nothing now remained for our suitor but to carry the body to 
the inn, which he did with much difficulty, as his brother was 
a tall, athletic, and powerful man. On reaching the inn-yard 
he left the body in a shed, with the twenty others, and entered 
the house to make arrangements for having them interred. In 
a short time he returned to the yard, and, to his amazement, 
there he beheld every man of those who were dead again alive 

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LOWUR MOVILLE. 161 



and walking about, just as if nothing had happened. Perceiv- 
ing himself thus made the sport of the elfin or fairy band, 
O'Doherty resolved to give up his matrimonial pursuits, at least 
for the present ; moreover, he determined to travel until he 
should find some other who had been tormented as much by 
them as himself, or until he should be satisfied that none such 
could be found. He therefore dismissed his brother and ^e 
young men, who returned homeward, and, crossing the ferry, 
he proceeded firstly to the house of O'Kane. He was kindly 
received, and soon disclosed all that had happened to him on 
his journey, adding that his object was not to seek a wife 
just then, but to proceed on and onward, until he should find 
some one who had been as far duped by the fairies as he 
had. been, or until he should satisfy hunpelf that no such 
person could be found. " If that is what you seek," replied 
O'Kane, "you shall not have far to go ; for what I am 
about to relate has happened to myself. It was, of course, 
all the doings of the sheeggies^ and is still more wonderful 
than all you have told me, 

" One morning I arranged that the boys and mysdf 
should go to work in the bog, and I told my wife to pre- 
pare oatmeal bread for the dinner, which we were to carry 
with us. While the dinner was in preparation, I walked 
out and strolled listlessly down to the little bay behind the 
house here. I there beheld a tiny boat — ^a regular little 
crab-sheU — yet so surpassingly beautiful that I was tempted 
to go and examine it minutely as it floated lightly on the 
-water. In doing so, and just as I put one foot into it, 
some invisible power shoved me forward and in I fell alto- 
gether. I had barely room to sit down. The wind veered 
Tonnd; and out I was carried to sea. There was not a 
vessel on the surface of the waters, nor even a boat by. 
which I might be picked up ; so on I was carried until 
every vestige of land had vanished from my view. I had 
reached mid-channel, and still kept quite composed ; it were 
.useless to do else, for, without sail, or helm, or oar, if fay 
life were to be saved, it would be by keeping as quiet as 
possible in my unsteady little craft. Soon, however, I felt 
a change coming over me; my brain began to swim, and putting 
my hand to my head, I found I had got on me a woman's 
hair. The change kept progressing, and very soon I was 
metamoiphoBed into a female. Land at last appeared in view. 



y Google 



162 IKISHOWEX. 



and in a short time the boat went aground on the coast of 
Cantire. Going ashore I perceived at a short distance a 
stately castle, but not a sign of human occupation. I entered 
the castle, and in a splendid banqueting hall a sumptuous 
supper lay prepared, (for it was then dim evening) yet no 
sign of any living being. I took supper, and no sooner was 
it over than the candle which burned before me was carried 
by invisible agency to another apartment, where a downy 
couch was spread. Here I went to bed, slept, and in the 
morning found by my side a beautiful little child. I had al- 
ready ceased wondering at whatever might happen, so I took 
up the child and proceeded to the shore. In the little port in 
which I previously landed I beheld the same little boat dancing 
on the gentle biliows. I advanced toward it, and was again 
involuntarily pushed into it, carrying with me the child. We 
drifted away to sea, and, self-guided, my little vessel brought 
me back to Magilligan Strand. On this voyage I was re- 
transfonned, and then, in propria persona, I walked back to 
this house with my little treasure in my arms. She grew 
up, and is now the handsome girl whose fame has brought 
you to my door. To add to your astonishment I have fur- 
ther to say that, as I entered the house, my wife told me 
that the dinner bread was then just hardened at the fire.'* 
O'Doheriy made no remark when this story was told, but 
returned home congratulating himself for having escaped ma- 
trimonial alliance with a real fairy." 

It was a favourite maxim with the Danes to take, and, if 
possible, keep possession of the principal inlets and harbours, 
in order to keep up communication with their base of supplies, 
and when beaten on shore to have their ships as places of refuge 
to retreat to. We accordingly find them often appearing in 
Lough Foyle. In 864 they were here defeated by Aldh Finn- 
liath, monarch of Ireland ; in the year 893 Armagh was plun- 
dered by the Danes of Lough Foyle; in a.d., 919, a fleet of 
32 ships landed in Lough Foyle, and Inishowen was plun- 
dered by them ; but they were checked by Fearghal, who slew 
the crew of one of the ships, broke the ship itself, and car- 
ried off the goods ; and more of them were broken on the 
rocks and sand banks. Lough Foyle attracts notice at a 
period somewhat later. The annalists say that in 1248 
O'Neill, Lord of Tyrone, brought small boats from Lough 
Foyle into Magh Ithe, and across the country till he reached 



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LOWXB MOYIIpLE. 162 



Lough Erne, In expldnoitioii ol this paasag^ O'Donovaa sayf 
the ancient Inidi gare the najne of Lough Fojle to the whold 
extent of water from the mouth of the lake to Lijord. 
Mftgh Ithe, he aa^^s^ Kes to tbe west of what is now called th0 
ri v«r Foyle— that i£^ the plain whioh extends from Deny to 
LiJSbrd on the west of the Foyle* 

The town of Moville belongs to the parish of Low» MoviUe, 
and is situated sixteen miles north of Londonderry. It was 
formerly called Bunafoihle, a word signifying the foot of tb^ 
parish or congregation. The situation of Moville is rery 
favourable, standing as it does on the shore of the lough, and 
sheltered from the north and westerly winds by that high ridge 
of land which runs behind it towards Greencastle. Casting 
his eye across the glassy surface of the lough the traveller has 
a pleasing view of the fertile districts of Myroe and the vale of 
the Faughan, in the county Derry, backed by the mountains of 
Benbraddagh and Beneveny. Moville has of late grown 
rapidly into importance, and every encouragement for its im- 
provement and extension has been given by its spirited pro- 
prietor, the Kev. Mr. Montgomery. The road from Deny to 
Greencastle passes through it, and at the centre of the town 
another road strikes off from it at right angles leading to 
CuldafF, MaHn, Carndonagh^ &c. The town consists of a 
square and four principal streets, and there are, besideSy 
many elegant villas and bathing lodges adjoining the tow^a 
and along the shore. Piers, projecting into deep water, have 
been constructed for vessels calling here. Steamers froin 
Deny, Glasgow, Liverpool, Portrush, &c., call daily, and the 
vessels of the Montreal Ocean Steam Navigation Company, 
trading between Liverpool and Portland, U.S., call weekly on 
their outward voyage to receive mails and passengers for the 
several States and cities of North America, One of their 
homeward bound also oaUs weekly for the delivery of mails and 
passengers. In addition to these the vessels of a line lately 
established by the Messrs. Handyside & Co., of Glasgow, also 
call here weekly. This is the Anchor Line, and promises to be 
very popular. Moville has long been highly esteemted as » 
watering-place, and all available accommodation sought alter 
by bathes in the summer ; and though other bathing-plaoeft 
have lately attracted aitentioii^ the people of Moville may^ \^ 
a scale of moderate charges, and by that comrtesy to viitos 

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164 nrisHowEK. 



for which they are remarkable, long continue to maintain the 
pre-eminence of their town as a fashionable batlung-plaoe. 

The population in 1861 was 897. There is a weekly 
market, (lliursday) and fairs are held on the 28th of January, 
April, July, and October, for the sale of cattle, sheep, and 
pigs. A large export trade is done with Glasgow and 
Liverpool in fish, fowl, eggs, and butter. It has a Constabulary 
station, which belongs to the district of Cam, a Post-office, Dis- 
pensary, and Loan Fund, and Petty Sessions are held in it on 
every fourth Tuesday. 

lie houses in Moville are new and well built, but the only 
edifice that can prefer any claim to beauty or architectural pro- 
portion is the Convent of the Sisters of Mercy. It stands on 
a rising ground at the east side of the town. The sight is 
truly picturesque. Below are the broad blue waves of the 
Foyle, decked with shipping of every class, from the American 
liner to the smallest fishing boat ; in the distance you can see 
Magilligan and the Derry mountains ; in the background the 
Inishowen mountains rise their grey heads high into the sky. 
The Convent grounds are spacious, have an extensive frontage, 
and are carefully tended. The schoolrooms are large, lofty, and 
well ventilated. To the Convent is attached a pretty large 
chapel for the use of the community, and which afibrds the 
townspeople an opportunity of hearing a daily mass. The 
eastern window is large, and displays much artistic skill. To 
kneel before the altar during the solemn stillness of the night, 
and behold the light of the silvery moon streaming through the 
window, you are reminded of Scott's description of Melrose :~^ 

'* The moon on the east oriel shone, 
Throngli slender shafts of shapely stone, 
By foliaged tracery combined ; 
Thou wonld'st have thought some fairy's hand, 
'Twixt poplars straight the osier wand, 
In many a freakish knot had twined ; 
Then framed a spell when the work was done, 
And changed the willow-wreaths to stone." 

The education which the good sisters impart does not consist 
of an empty catalogue of puerilities, which too often constitute 
the education of the world. Education does not consist in 
reading, writing, arithmetic, music, and the like. These are 
mere mechanical arts. They form a part of the grand educar 
tional system, but it is only a subordinate part. Beligion 
should be the beginning, middle, and end of all educational 

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LOWER MOVILLB. 165 



systems. Such is the education which the good Sisters of 
Mercy impart Beligion, however, is not the chief object of 
the institution. 

Behind the Convent, and at a short distance, there is a large 
well-conducted National School. All these buildings have been 
erected within the past few years, and form only one of the 
many religious and educational establishments that have been 
founded by the fostering hand of his Lordship, the Most £ev. 
Br. Kelly. 

Of the elegant seats along the Foyle at Moville is Eavens- 
cliff, the sea-side residence of the Very Eev. Dr. Devlin, D.D. 
It is situated near the water's edge, and behind it there is a 
beautiful grove. The gardens are surrounded by high walls, 
and contain graperies and glasshouses, in which the rarest and 
choicest exotics are brought to admirable perfection. The 
whole are attended to by a skilful gardener, who seems well 
practised in his art. I must not omit to mention that there is 
a courteous and obliging housekeeper who kindly showed me 
through the premises. 

The living is a rectory, in the patronage of the Bishop of 
Derry ; the Eector's net income is £319, The church, which 
was built in 1782, is a small neat edifice, and has a tower on 
its eastern front. It stands on an emineuce convenient to the 
shore of Lough Foyle. Besides the Parish Church, there is 
another small church, which has lately been erected in the 
town of Moville, There are two Roman Catholic Chapels, one 
at Ballybrack, the other at Ballynacrey ; and National Schools 
at Glenagiveney, Shrove, Moville, and Gulladuff. 

Contiguous to Moville is also the residence of his Lordship, 
the Most Rev. Dr. Kelly, Catholic Bishop of Deny, Moville 
too is distinguished as being the birth-place of the illustrious 
Sir Robert Montgomery. The principal seats in the parish of 
Lower Moville are Moville Lodge, Gortgowan, Ballybrack 
House, Drumawier House, Leckenny House, Drumagessin 
House, Ravenscliff, and Rosebauk, the residence of Pechell 
Irvine, Esq., J. P. 

The following story has appeared in another form in a Dublin 
periodical : — 

'^ In fair Moville lived a maiden named Mary McLaughlin. 
Mary was an only child, the faithful nurse and attendant of her 
aged father, and at the time of which we write she was 
an orphan, for her mother was dead. Fair, tall, and exceedingly 

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166 mtsmmxx. 

k»ndsoine was Mary ; h%r hair wsm as dark as the tnng of the 
raven, her counteBance glowed with the bloom ol health, iier 
cheeks resembled the fresh blown rose ; of a pure grey tint like^ 
the hazel was hear lustrous eye. Her fine prepossessing ap- 
pearance she inherited from her lost dear mother, whose yesy 
image she was, and who doted npon her as the idol of her soul, 
and early instilled into her youthful mind lessons of piety and 
devotion to her Creator, and a sense of the duties which, as a 
child, she owed her parents — ^love, obedience, and filial tender- 
ness, which admirable instructions Mary dearly cherished, and 
riohly profited by. Young, elegant, comely, it was no wonder 
that Mary was admired. Two suitable young men strove 
eag^ly for her hand. The ardent affections of both were reci- 
procated by her, insomuch that in her heart of hearts she could 
not obtain a sunnier spot for either, nor entertain a preference 
for one over the other. She loved both virith equal ardour, and 
it was a source of the greatest discomfort to her as she tried, 
but tried in vain, to make in her affections a distinction between 
them. Often, too, had she to endure the exquisite raillery of 
her comrades, who used to tell her she should marry either of 
the young men ; but, if she intended not to marry she should 
tell them so, and leave others a chance ; and then they would 
mischievously ask her would i^ not herself expect from others 
a course similar to what they reconmiended. 

^* Under circumstances less trying how often have we heard 
of young viUage maids, yea, and of high bom dames, the 
daughters of the proud and wealthy, consenting to be preyed 
upon by crafty spae- wives, fortune-tellers, and cuptossers, who 
audaciously pretend to penetrate the mysterious future, and to 
trace their fair clients' destinies in the lines which intersect each 
other on the palms of their hands, oc in the gyrations of sedi- 
mentary matter at the bottom of a tea eup. Though the nnnd 
6i our heroine was fairly clouded and darkened with grief and 
anxiety, she despised all such hollow quadcery. 

^< In a quiet retired spot in the neighbourhood of Mary's 
abode was a holy well. One evening, at the time we treat of, 
a young female might be seen underneath the sheltering thorn, 
beside this holy well, kneeling in fervent prayer. She was all 
alone, nor dreaded aught which might disturb her devotions. 
In the still evening hour two young men approached this spot 
from opposite directions. At the same moment they beheld the 
female in prayerful attitude at the well, and they b^eld each 

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LOWER MOVILLE. 167 



other. They start back amazed, for the meeting was wholly 
unexpected ; neither uttered a word, but their uneasy and 
embarrassed looks spoke volumes. I need hardly say that the 
group now before us are Mary and her lovers. Both were 
unnoticed by her, hence they stood quite still, not daring to 
disturb her. When she arose to depart, there stood both before 
her, face to face ; seeing them her colour came and went ; she 
was red and pale alternately ; she could not on the moment 
proceed on her way, so, with throbbing heart and in deep con- 
fusion, she sat herself down on a little mossy bank hard by. 
One of the young men then stepped forward and said — * Mary, 
I perceive your difficulty, and can easily judge how painful it 
would be for you to favour one of us, as I take it, at the ex- 
pense of the other ; but, in order that you may have time and 
leisure for reflection and an opportunity to judge of the dictates 
of your own haart, I hereby propose to depart on to-morrow 
morning, nor shall I thereafter set foot on Irish soil for a 
twelvemonth and a day. At the end of that time I hope to 
return, and if your feelings be still favourable to me, I will 
press you to accept me as your future husband. In the mean- 
time, you are to consider yourself perfectly free to dispose of 
your hand and affections as you please ; and, on my retiu-n, if 
I find you have done so, however I may regret it, I shall not 
complain.' 

" With equal generosity his rival replied, * My aged mother 
is dependent on me for support ; I cannot leave Ireland, but 
shall be careful not to intrude myself on Mary's presence for 
twelve months, and to make sure of this I will quit Moville 
to-morrow and reside at Greencastle till the expiration of that 
time.' Deeply thankful to both, Mary bade them an affec- 
tionate farewell, and hastened back to her father's cottage. 
Next morning Hugh M*Dermott shipped as a sailor on board 
a merchantman which lay at anchor in the Foyle, and Peter 
M*Gonagle, equally prompt to the fulfilment of his design, 
removed to Greencastle, and followed the occupation of a fisher- 
man. Months rolled on ; Peter's mother died and was buried 
at Cooley. Dearly as her son had loved her, the honourable 
engagement which he had entered into was still dearer to him, 
and, lest he should violate his promise, he did not attend her 
funeral, as the procession had to pass through the town of 
Moville on their way to the graveyard. 

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168 INISHOWBN. 



*^ The twelve months had just passed, and the night of the 
following day was one fraught with anxiety to the fisherman of 
Greencastle. With anxious nervous longing he waited for the 
morrow— ^waited to know whether his rival might return — 
waited to know whether Mary's deeision should be pronounced 
in his favour. These were the thoughts that occupied his mind, 
as he sat at his fireside ; but now a howling storm began to 
rage without, the Tonus were roaring, so was the thunder peal, 
and flashes of forked lightning glared fitfully through the pitchy 
darkness. He went at last to bed ; his sleep was broken and 
uneasy, and ever and anon, as he awc^e, he prayed for the 
safety of those who, on that awful night, might be tossed about 
on the stormy main ; yet he could not sleep, and getting up he 
went out in the night and climbed the summit of a rocky cliff, 
from which he looked intently across the sea. There he could 
perceive the deep, furrowed up by the tempest, and at a dis- 
tance along its surface he beheld a flash. It is not heaven's 
lightning ; soon again it is repeated. Ah ! he understands rt ; 
it is the minute guic^t sea. He darted from the clifl and ran 
to his cot, which he immediately set all on Are as a signal to 
the distressed mariners. His next act was to launch his own 
boat, and in a few moments more he was ofi^, rowing it all alone, 
over the stormy billows. At length he gained the ship ; by the 
dim light burning faintly he soon perceived that the crew had 
just abandoned her, invited perhaps to land by the flames which 
^shot up from his own consuming cottage. He could also per- 
ceive evidence of strife and struggle before their departure, and 
imuch gold and valuables strewn about the deck. But what is 
this lying along the mast ? Taking the lamp he goes to exa- 
fmine. He hears a moan — ^the moan of a wounded man. He 
was a strong, robust man ; and his face was bronzed by a tro- 
.pical sun, save the forehead, which was white and fair as the 
lily. Amid his pain and suflerings he knows the wounded 
sailor; it is his rival, Hugh M*Dennott. Had Peter M*Gonagle 
.been less of a Christian he would have said, ^I shall not 
•encumber myself with this wounded man, but secure the wealth 
"which will recompense me for the loss of my dwelling, and be 
«ure to render my suit successful ; if this man die here it was 
liis fate, not any fault of mine.' But no ; such were not 
Peter's sentiments ; he had come of parents w^ho taught 
Inm the divine precept of doing to others as he would wish to 
be done by, and raising up the wounded man, he kindly md 

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LOWER MOVILLE. 169' 



tenderly assisted him into his boat, and going in along with 
him, he shaped his course for land. 

" The storm raged throughout the night, its fury had hardly 
abated. At the grey dawn of the following mornings on tho. 
high rocky knoll which juts into the Foyle at the town of. 
Moville, Mary McLaughlin might be seen looking over the 
sea — ^looking intently across the still disturbed waters. No sail 
met her anxious gaze as the moments sped rapidly on. Tired 
of waiting, she was about to take her d^arture, when lo, she . 
dimly sees a small boat buflfeting the waves, and slowly advan- 
cing to the land. I shall not attempt to describe her feelings as 
she awaited its arrival ; it at last entered the little port and 
gained the shore. The boat was that which bore to land the 
wounded, now dying, sailor, manned and conducted by Peter 
M'Gonagle. She recognised his manly handsome features, 
though changed so much by a foreign clime, and she is quickly 
bending over him in silent poignant grief, for she knows that a 
few brief moments must terminate his earthly career. It is 
twelve months since Mary and her lovers parted ; they are now 
all three again together ; but what a melancholy meeting. 
The sufferer opened his eyes as Mary gazed down upon him, 
and smiled a last smile of recognition and of thanks* A priest 
was soon at hand, who administered to him the consoling last 
rites of his church. In a few short words he expressed his 
admiration of his rival's noble spirit, blessed them both, and 
expired. 

" Mary and Peter M^onagle were afterwards united ; they 
lived contented, and the gratitude expressed by the dying sailor 
made her devotion for her husband doubly great through life. 
Thus ends the story of the lovers of MovHle.'* 

In a former chapter allusion has been made to the erection 
of Greencastle, and what is there stated is given on the author 
rity of Lewis. On reference, however, to the AniMjiU of the 
Four Masters we find another account respecting it. It is here, 
stated that in 1305 Eichard Burke, the Bed Earl of Ulster, 
erected it to subdue the O'Neills and O'Donnells, and check the. 
incursions of the Scots. It was then called New Castle. In 
1332 Walter, son of Sir Walter Burke, was taken prisoner by 
the Dun Earl of Ulster, William Burke, and imprisoned here,., 
where he was starved to death by order of the Earl. On that, 
account the Earl was murdered the following year at Carrick- 
fergus, in the 21st year of his ag^. He left an onlv daughter, 

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170 unsaowES. 

who was married to Lionel, son of Edward IIL of England, 
and this prince was then created in her right Earl of Ulster and 
Lord of Connaught, and these titles were enjoyed by different 
princes of the Koyal blood, nntii at length they became, in the 
p^rson of Edward IV., the special inheritance of the Crown of 
Englan^. On the EarFs death the chiefs of the junior branches 
of the Barke family seized upon his estates in Connaught. 
One of these was Sir Ulick Burke, the ancestor of the Earls of 
Clanrickard, and another. Sir Edmund, the progenitor of the 
Viscounts of Mayo. The Duke of Clarence laid claim to their 
possessions, but the Government appears to have been too weak 
to assert the authority of the English laws, and the territories 
of the Burkes were suffered to remain with them. In 1555 
Greencastle was demolished by Calvagh O'Donnell, at the head 
of an army of mercenary Scots. 



Chapter XYl. — Upper Moville. 

The parish of Upper Moville is contiguous to the former, 
and is traversed by the road from Deny to Greeucastle. It 
contains 19,081 acres ; population, 4,207. The land rises 
gradually from the shores of the lough to the summits of the 
mountains of Crucknanonian, Crunlieve, Drung, and Leema- 
crosson. Nearly one-half of it, therefore, is mountainous, and 
through the rest are detached patches of bog land. The soil is 
tolerably rich near the shore, and in a fair state of cultivation. 
Excellent sandstone is to be found near Whitecastle, with indi- 
cations of coal, and convenient to "Whitecastle there is a very 
extraordinary whin dyke. The produce of the land is chiefly 
com and flax. At the northern boundary of the parish a pier 
has been constructed, which is called Carrickarory Pier. Car- 
rickarory means the knoU or rock of Rory. There is a tradi- 
tion among the people that a friar, named Roger or Rory 
Hegarty, once lodged hei'e. "When a sick call came to him, and 
when inquiry was made for the priest, the answer generally was, 
" he is walking around the rock.'' It was said he had also 
another brother a priest, some say two. At Drung are the 
remains of an ancient cromleach ; and terraces and remains of 
ancient buildings may be traced near Redcastle, Whitecastle, 
and at Castlecarey. As before remarked, the French writer. 
Feller, says that Redcastle was the birthplace of that misguided 

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T7PPER MOVILLE'. 171 



genius, John Toland, but in compliance with traditions and 
local information received by me, and which I believe to be 
accurate, I have set down the parish of Clonmany as the place 
where he was bom, and where he lived to the age of twelve or 
thirteen years. 

Near the church of Cooley stands a lofty handsopae stone 
cross. We believe there are few places in Ireland ql the same 
extent so rich in stone crosses, as Inishowen, and lew whose 
workmanship bespeaks a more remote origin and higher degree 
of art ; the wonder is how so many have been preserved up to 
the present time. Dr. Beeves, in a lecture which he delivered 
a few years ago, speaks in strong terms of the vandalism that 
was practised on Irish crosses and other works of art in Down 
and Antrim, aud elsewhere. It appears some were broken in. 
fragments by the disciples of M^Adam, and strewn on the 
public highway ; others were used as lintels of doors, others as 
chimney- stones, and some in .building fences. It is really 
creditable that such vandalism has not been practised in Inish- 
owen ; still there are exceptions, for that cross of Cool«y has itd 
history. Probably it can dat^ its origin to the time of St. 
Finian, who was abbot of that celebrated monastery, and patron 
of the parish, or perhaps even to the time of St. Patrick, by 
whom the monastery was first founded. It has its religious 
memories and its old associations. The good monks of Cooley 
often knelt and prayed before it ; the stranger, who was hospi- 
tably received at the door, and lodged for the night within 
Cooley^s walls, knelt before it in the morning "fere he departed 
from the monastery gate. ^ When the monastery was destroyed 
during the civil wars of 1688, the cross survived the wreck, 
and in the dark days of pfersecution, when religion was pro- 
scribed and its ministers banished, the descendants of the. old 
Celtic race who inhabited these mountains and preserved the 
faith of their fathen, reverenced that cross and paid it a 
passing visit. 

In the beginning of the present century a new road was to 
pass by Cooley — the cross was in its way, and hence it must be 
tumbled ; so, at least, said a magistrate, and some of the sur- 
rounding gentry. The good Dr. Callaghan, however, who was 
at that time pastor of Moville, thought otherwise. The power 
of a magistrate and of the gentry was great in those times ; the 
influence of a priest was insignificant indeed. Who dare gain- 
say what the lords x)f the soil would determine ?^ Yes,, Dr. 

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172 IKISHOWBN. 



Oallaghan did oppose them, and opposed them effectually. 
The labourers were at work, the gentry stood by, the old cross 
was about to fall, but the worthy parish priest, backed by his 
people, rushed to the rescue, and preserved it as its stands up 
to the present day. We admire the heroism of the Boman, 
Horatius Codes, defending the bridge till the last plank was 
cut, and then flinging himself, amid showers of darts, into old 
father Tiber, and swimming to the opposite shore ; we admire 
the courage of the stalwart blacksmith of Limerick, quitting 
his forge, seizing a skdge hammer, and rushing to the defence 
of Limerick's walls ; but far more noble the Christian heroism 
of the good old priest who rushed to the rescue of this time- 
honoured and hallowed symbol of man's redemption. 

The Hving is a rectory, in the patronage of the Bishop of 
Derry ; Rector's net income, £270 per annuuL The glebe 
house was built in 1775, at a cost of £590. Tl^ glebe contains 
74 Cunningham acres, valued at £66 12s per anniun. 

In the Roman Catholic divisions this parish is united to 
Lower Moville. There is a small chapel at Drung, on a com- 
manding eminence on the shore of the lough. The building is 
'a plain unpretending edifice. Some years of the present cen- 
tury elapsed before it was built ; previous to this there was a 
little altar near the same spot, and on a Sunday morning the 
good people of the district might be seen tripping along the 
mountains and across the fields to the Sunday mass, which was 
celebrated in the open air, a broad stone for an altar, and the 
blue vault of heaven for its covering ; and on a cold day in 
winter one could hardly imagine a more dreary and exposed 
locality. At last the good priest of the district made an appeal 
to the people, but the appeal was for the most part unheeded ; 
he appealed again, and with no better effect. On a cold day 
in February, and while the wind blew a perfect hurricane, the 
people knelt around the rude altar, and the priest read the 
morning prayer, previous to which the good man made a tiiird 
appeal for subscriptions to raise a diapel, but, as before, with- 
out effect. He was a venerable old man, his locks were as white 
as the snow that fell thickly around him, his tremulous hands 
were pinched with cold, and there knelt his flock around him — 
the old, the decrepid, the infirm, as well as the strong and 
stalwart. They, too, felt the excessive rigour of the oold ; it 
was a good opportunity, and the priest did not allow it to pass. 
*^ How long," said the venerable old man, *^ ahaU ye continue 

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UPPER MOVILLB. 173 



to worship God in the open air ? Time was when" ye were not 
allowed to build a church ; fortunately that time has passed 
away. • I hare appealed to you before, I appeal to you now 
again." The words of the good priest produced their effect, a 
subscription was organised, and the church, as it now stands, 
was built. I may observe, however, that as this church is 
found inadequate for the accommodation of the people, another 
is about to be built in its place, and there is a large Bum of 
inoney on hand for the purpose. 

Passing by that little chapel of Drung reminds me of an old 
story that occurred some years ago up in the Drung mountains. 
An old man was dangerously ill ; he had no family, and his 
patrimony consisted of two cows and the little articles of fur- 
niture which his house contained. The priest was sent for, 
and, as usual, was prompt in his attendance. After adminis- 
tering the consolations of religion to the dying man, his atten- 
tion was attracted by a npise in the kitchen. He proceeded to 
see what it was ; he returned again to the sick man's room, 
and was asked what they were disputing about. " Well," 
said the priest, " they are disputing about those two cows of 
yours." " Is that the regard they have for me," said the 
dying man ; " Do you know what it is, father dear, if I thought 
I could get grass for them where I'm going, they would never 
enjoy a hair, of their tail !" 

There is a neat Presbyterian Meetinghouse at Claar ; and 
another very elegant one has lately been erected on Greenbank, 
at Paul's Strand, on the shore of Lough Foyle. A third one 
stands near the town of Moville. These Meetinghouses are in 
connexion with the General Assembly ; and the latter has been 
erected for the accommodation of the members of the Presby- 
terian religion resident in Iskaheen, and the southern limits of 
the parish of Up^r Moville. 

The National Schools are at Terryroan, Ballylawn, Carriek- 
maquigley, Drung, and Cabry. 

The principal seats are Carrownaff, the residence of William 
Haslett, Esq., J. P. The grounds are embellished with ter- 
races and flower gardens, skilfully and tastefully arranged. 
Bedcastle, the residence of B. Doherty, Esq., M.D., J.P. ; the 
Cottage, the residence of Mrs. Sheil Doherty. Mrs. Dohert/s 
maiden name is Sheil ; she is a native of Bailyshannon, and her 
mother was a sister of the late O'Connor Don, of Eoscommon. 
Sho is also a relative of the M^Dermotts, the princes oi Cool- 

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174 INISHOWEN. 

avin, a name rendered so famous by the graphic pen of the late 
Lady Morgan. Whitecastle, Foyleview, the residence of R. 
Lepper, Esq., J. P. ; Beech Cottage, of A. L. Carey, Esq., J. P. ; 
Ballylawn, Greenbank, and the Glebe House. 

Moville, in the Annals of the Four Masters, is written Magh- 
bile. It appears that St. Finian was not the only saint that 
parish produced, for we find from the same source that St. 
Sillan, Bishop and Abbot of Maghbile, died on the 25th 
August, G18. We may observe that the territory known as 
Bradach Glen, comprised about one-half of the eastern half of 
Inishowen. John Colgan, in his celebrated work, " Trias 
Thaum," alludes to the river that flows through this glen in the 
following terms : — 

" Breadach est flumolus peninsvlcB de Inis-Eoguin qui in 
sinum de Loch Fahhuil apud Maghbile exoneratusj^ 

At Quigley's Point, the junction of the Camdonagh and 
Moville lines with the Derry road, there is a Constabulary 
Station and a Coastguard Station. There are here, too, a 
Penny Post-office and Dispensary. At Carrickmaquigley, a 
village near Redcastle, fairs are held on the l«t of January, 
14th February, 13th March, 17 th April, 1st June, 12th 
August, and 13th of November. Peter, one of the ill-fated 
Magennises, fled to Counaught, because he fired a gun at a 
man named Gallagher, in Carrickmaquigley, by which he lost 
his eyes. 

As ^e pass Quigley's Point and enter on Paul's Strand, I 
am reminded of an incident that occurred not far ofl^ nearly 20 
years ago. During the famine years of 1847 and 1848, many of 
the peasantry of Inishowen were obliged to abandon country 
and home, and seek an asylum in a foreign land, and, conse- 
quently, many farms remained unoccupied. An old man 
belonging to the county Derry sold his farm, scraped together 
some money, came over to Inishowen, and settled down some- 
where near the Drung mountains, in a farm for which he had 
nothing to pay. He was one day passing through Qaigley's 
Point, and he carried a basket on each . arm. One of the 
baskets contained a few old hens, the other some dozens of eggs, 
which he was about to dispose of in Deny. His appearance, 
on the whole, was exceedingly grotesque. Shall I attempt to 
describe him ? Well, then, I must tell you, he wore a long 
coat extending to near his ankle, and this garment was diversi- 
fied by about one hundred and one patches, of various contrast- 

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UPPER MOVILLE. 175 



ing colours, the largest and most conspicuous of which was a 
piece of bed-curtain, extending to its nether extremity, and on 
account of which he got the sobriquet of " Curtaintail," bj 
which name, gentle reader, with your leave, we shall henceforth 
know him. Around this coat, by way of girdle, he had knotted 
a neatly plaited straw rope. His feet were stockingless, and 
the toes protruded from an aperture in the front of his shoes. 
Seeing an advertistmeut posted on a wall, his curiosity prompted 
him to read it ; it was a farm of land to be let. He entered 
a public house, and after staring vacantly about him, was told 
by the good dam« that, at that particular moment, she was in 
no mood for assisting mendicants ; it was then he inquired about 
the landlord, who proposed to let the farm, and was told that he 
was just then sitting in an adjoining room. The gentleman of 
property eyeing the strange intruder with a look of sullen 
sternness, demanded what his business, there was. " I see," said 
our friend Curtaintail, " a farm of land to be let, and being 
told that you are the owner, come to make you a proposal." 
" Begone," said the landlord, " I have too many of your class. 
I have no intention to give lands to such a fellow as you." 

Curtaintail said nothing, but, shutting the door, soon disap- 
peared. After the lapse of a few moments he returned, knocked 
at the door, and being told to enter, presented himself a second 
time before the landlord. 

This gentleman grew irritated, and contracting his brows and 
raising his voice to stentorian pitch, shouted aloud, " Begone, 
sir, have you not got your answer already." 

" I beg to be excused," . replied Curtaintail, " it is not land 
I want ; but could you tell me any one who would take £lOO 
at interest ?" 

" Be seated," said the landlord, mildly ; tell me, have you 
seen this farm ?" 

" I have not," said the other. 

Ringing the bell, he told the servant to kindly accompany 
this man to the bailiflf s house, and to bear his orders to that 
functionary to show him the farm which was to be let, " and," 
said he, addressing himself to our motley friend, " after you 
have seen it come back again, and, probably, we will strike a 
bargain." Curtaintail did so, and the bargain was made on 
his return. 

During the penal times, mass was celebrated in the parish of 
Moville, at Ballinacray, Carrickarory, Summerhill, and Drung. 



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176 INISHOWEH. 



The Rev. Henry O'Crillj became parish priest of Moville in 
1721, and died on the 13th December, 1756, aged 78 years. 
He was, therefore, for 35 years P.P. of Moville ; he is buried 
in Cooley. We hare not been able to ascertain who his suc- 
cessor was. The Rev. Eugene O'Callaghan became parish priest , 
in 1771, and died on the 27th September, 1815, aged 75 years. 
He is buried in Cooley. 

t)r. O'Callaghan was a native of the parish of Donagh. He 
Was succeeded by the Rev. Gerald Doherty, who exchanged in 
1823 for Culdaff, where he died in 1825 ; he is buried in tiie 
churchyard of Drung. In the same grave are also buried 
Priar M'Closkey, and the Rev. Mr. 0'B[ane. The grave occu- 
pies the spot where mass was celebrated before the chapel of 
Drung was built. He was succeeded by the Rev. Mr. O'Kane. 
Mr. O'B^ane was succeeded by the Very Rev. Wm. M^Cafierty 
in 1829, who was transferred to Donagh in 1838, and was suc- 
ceeded by the Right Rev. John McLaughlin, who selected it as 
his mensal parish. He was succeeded by the Rev. George 
Doherty, on whose death the Right Rev. Dr, Kelly selected it 
as his mensal parish. 



Chapter XVII. — IsJcaheen, 



We have now arrived at what is known as the Muff Ecclcr 
siastical District, which formerly belonged to the parish of 
Templemore. This district was erected in 1809, when thirteen 
townlands were separated from Templemore. The living is a 
perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Dean of Deny, to 
whom the tithes go. The curate's income is £88 yearly. The 
church is a neat edifice, in the Gothic style of architecture, and 
was built by one of the Harts of Kilderry. 

The district comprises 15,030 statute acres — about four-fifths 
of which are good land, under an excellent system of cultiva- 
tion. The remainder is mountainous, but affords pasturage for 
sheep. The population is 3,052. 

In the Roman Catholic divisions. Muff Ecclesiastical district, 
to which 80 families of the parish of Upper Moville have been 
added, forms the parish, of Iskaheen. Iskaheen, Burt, and 
Inch were separated from Templ^ore in 1811, and given to 
the late Rev. Wm. McLaughlin, a priest remarkable for his 
great. piety and energetic adyoca<cy of the temperance cause. 



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ISKAHEEK. - 177 



Father M'LaughliB remained here as parish priest until the 
Jrear 1836, and then left for Donagheady, where he lived for 
1 1 years. After this he returned to Iskaheen^ where he minis- 
tered till his death in 1856. 

He generously bequeathed his house an a parochial residence 
for his successors. A memorial worthy of the great priest has 
been erected to his memory by the exertions of the Rev. Jas. 
McLaughlin, of Camdonagh, then a young missionary priest 
and curate of Iskaheen, and who himself gave the munificent 
donation of X20 .towards the cost of its erection. The monu- 
ment is a mural tablet ; it cost near £100, and was executed 
by Mr. Kell, of Derry. As a work of art it is supposed to be 
unequalled in the north of Ireland. The chapel of Iskaheen 
was built in 1782, by the ancestor of one of the leading 
Catholics of Derry^ 

The village of Muff, though small, has an air of neatness 
and cleanliness about it. Fairs are held on the 4th of May, 
5th August, 25th October, and 11th of December. It has a 
Penny Post-office, Constabulary Barrack, which belongs to Bun- 
crana district, and a Dispensary. It was beside the old mill in 
this village that the late Thomas Doherty, Esq., was born. 
Near Muff is Kilderry, the property of Lieutenant Hart, des- 
cendant of the late General Hart, who at one time represented 
the County Donegal in Parliament. 

Since these chapters have commenced I have occasionally 
taken the liberty of introducing some legends regarding fairies, 
the popular superstition of the ancient Irish. This superstition 
is dying away, and properly so, in this age of progress. We 
have had others, or perhaps I should say we have still the 
lingering remains of others, such as witchcraft, blinking, or the 
evil eye ; these are not Irish ; they are Scottish importations. 
How often do we hear, from those who pretend to move in 
fashionable circles, the expression, ** Oh, that is merely an Irish 
superstition," just as if the Irish, and they alone, were the 
superstitious of the earth ; the fact is, however, that among the 
nations the Irish w^e really the least so, and the extent or 
character of their fairy delusions was neither dangerous nor 
alarming. It comes not within the scope of my design to enter 
at any length into the subject, yet I cannot forbear a passing 
glance at the evils which witchcraft has wrought among some 
of the neighbouring countries. 

On ref^ence to Chambers's " Information for the People," 



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178 INISHOWEN. 



we find that about 1524 the execution of persons suspected of 
witchcraft was very great in Spain, France, and Northern 
Germany, and that in 1516 five hundred were burned in 
Geneva in three months, and in France many thousands. In 
Germany this plague raged to a degree almost incredible. A 
catalogue of the executions at Wurtzburg for two years and two 
months, from 1627 to 1629, is divided into twenty-nine burn- 
ings, and contains the names of 157 pei-sons. The greater part 
of this catalogue consists of old women or foreign travellers, 
seized, as it would appear, as foreigners were at Paris during 
the days of Marat and Robespierre ; it contains children of 
twelve, eleven, ten, and nine years of age ; fourteen vicars of 
the cathedral ; two boys of noble families, two little sons of the 
Senator Stolbzenburg ; a strange boy ; a blind girl ; Gobel 
Babelin, the handsomest girl in Wurtzemburg, &c. From 1610 
to 1660 was the great epoch of the witch trials, and so late as 
1749 Maria Renata was executed at Wurtzburg for witchcraft. 
The number of victims who fell by these prosecutions exceeds 
100,000. 

In Scotland the statutes against witchcraft were carried out 
in their full integrity under James VI., " the Scottish Solo- 
mon," who considered himself an object of especial hatred to 
the witches, and who wrote a book on their alleged craft, 
styled " Daemonologie." From the removal of the sapient 
James to England, and particularly after his death, the witch 
prosecutions slackened considerably ; but as the spirit of puri- 
tanism gained strength, which it did during the latter part of 
the reign of Charles I., the partially cleared horizon became 
again overcast. The number of victims, says Chambers, it 
would be difficult accurately to compute, but the black scroll 
Would include, according to those who have most attentively in- 
quired into the subject, upwards of four thousand persons ! 

Witchcraft was denounced in England by formal and explicit 
statutes in the reign of Henry VIII. But they were groping 
in the dark, as it were, till James I. ascended the English 
throne. He conceived it to be his duty to illuminate the 
southerns on the subject of witchcraft. An act of the first year 
of his reign runs thus : — " Any one that shall use, practise, or 
exercise any invocation of any evil or wicked spirit, or consult or 
covenant with, entertain, or employ, feed or reward, any evil 
or wicked spirit, to or for any purpose ; or take up any dead 
man, &c., &c., such offenders, duly and lawfully convicted and 



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ISKAHEEN. 179 

attainted, shall suffer death." Here witchcraft is made a capital 
crime, and soon we find the frenzy devastating every comer of 
England. We accordingly find such wholesale murders as the 
following: — 1612, twelve persons condemned at Lancaster; 
1622, six at York ; 1634, seventeen in Lancashire; 1644, 
sixteen at Yarmouth ; 1645, fifteen at Chelmsford ; and in 
1645 and 1646, sixty persons perished in Suffolk, and nearly 
an equal number at the same time in Huntingdon. The poor 
creatures who usually composed these ill-fated bands, are thus 
described by an able observer : — " An old woman, with a 
wrinkled face, a furred brow, a hairy lip, a gobber tooth, a 
squint eye, a squeaking voice, or a scolding tongue, having a 
ragged coat on her back, a spindle in her hand, and a dog by 
her side — a wretched, infirm, and impotent creature, pelted and 
persecuted by all the neighbours, because the farmer's cart had 
stuck in the gateway, or some idle boy had pretended to spit 
needles and pins for the sake of a holiday from school or work" 
— such were the poor unfortunates selected to undergo the last 
tests and tortures sanctioned by the laws, and which tests were 
of a nature so severe that no one would have dreamt of inflict- 
ing them on the vilest murderers. 

Chief- Justices North and Holt were the first who set their 
faces against the continuance of these destructive delusions, and 
after their time some of the judges wont a step farther in their 
course of improvement, and spared the accused in spite of con- 
demnatory verdicts, as for instance Chief-Justice Powell, in 
1711, who pardoned an old woman when she was found guilty 
by an " intelligent" jury for conversing with the devil in the 
shape of a cat. Barrington, in his observations on the statute 
of Henry VI., does not hesitate to estimate the numbers of 
those put to death in England on the charge of witchcraft at 
thirty thousand. 

Having said so much to show that superstitions, and of a 
more dangerous type than our Irish ones, have existed else- 
where, I now proceed to give what will probably be my last 
fairy story : — 

" Is the priest at home ?" said an aged woman who presented 
herself at the back entrance of the good man's residence. " He 
is," said Nancy Patterson, the housekeeper ; " but is just now 
at dinner, you can see him presently." After the lapse of a 
few minutes the old man appeared. To judge from his looks 
he would seem to have seen near four score summers. He was 

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180 INISHOWEN. 



a man of temperate habits, and his face still preserved the firm 
oval of health. His step was firm, steady, and had all the 
elasticity of youth. He was tall and walked erect as if he vrere 
only a youth of twenty. His head was massive, its front "was 
expansive, but perhaps a good physio^omist would say it ivas 
too retreating for the development of strong intellectual powers. 
His looks were venerable, his manner was formal, and if he had 
a fault it was perhaps too much stem reserve. To see him and 
' converse with him you must of necessity admire and respect 
him. " Is it a sick call V said the venerable old man. " No," 
said Nancy Lynch, for this was the old woman's name. " Well, 
is it a blinking case, Nancy V* " No, your reverence, ever 
since the time I heard the story of Jack Rice, of Dunrain, 1 
have n© faith in blinking." 

" Pray, Nancy, what is that V* " Well, sir. Jack was con- 
fined to his bed one time for six months ; he was not able to 
rise unless he was lifted. Jack lived in a lonely house by the 
river side ; he was a married man but had no children. One 
day, Sally Robinson, his wife, went over to her brother Billy's, 
in Erganagh, on some business ; a dozen of the neighbours' 
cows came into Jack's haggard, and commenced tearing and 
eating the com. Poor Jack lay in his bed looking on at his 
com destroyed. You may be sure he had a heavy heart. He 
began to curse them, and to fig prayers on them, but 
there they stood, none of them fell. Then Jack thought 
of blinking them ; he turned his eyes upwards and 
downwards and crossways, but still, after all, none of them 
fdl, and with all his prayers, and curses, and blinking, they 
ate away till Sally, the wife, came home and hunted the dogs 
on them. Now, sir, Jack's a very smart man, and he says 
from that day he never put the least faith in blinking or 
cursing, for no man was ever better inclined to blink or curse 
than he was, and he believes if anybody could have done it he 
would have done it on that day." " Well, now, Nancy, since 
you have not come with a sick call nor on a business connected 
with blinking, be so good as to tell me as quickly as possible 
what you really have come about," said the priest. " Father, 
dear," said Nancy, in a whisper, " it's all about the fairies. It 
was Paddy Lynch and his family that sent me. Oh, sir, if you 
would know how that poor family is annoyed." A smile began 
to play over the old man's face, and you could easily see from 
the expresfflon of his countenance that he was not devoid of 

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1SKAHEEN. 181 

humour. " Nancy," said he, " have you ever seen any fairies V* 
" I did, father," she said, " but it is now fifty years ago. Mary 
DuJSfy and me were one day herding in Glackm<H:e mountain ; a 
number of our sheep strayed away into !E>emuck mountain, not 
far from the lilies. Mary and me went in search of them ; on 
our return home, and on this side of the hill, we saw a regi- 
ment of fairies following after ns." " "What were they like," 
said the priest, still smiling. " They were about two feet high," 
said Nancy, " wore red jackets and blue tro^isers, had caps like 
the soldiers, and carried guns over their shoulders. Mary and 
me took to our heels ; Mary was bigger and older than me, and 
could run faster. In , my hurry to keep up with her I fell ; it 
was God assisted me to rise or they would have been up and . 
killed me. Sir, that was the first time I saw the fairies, and I 
trust in God it will be the last." " But," said the priest, " you 
are still keeping me in the dark about the object of your visit." 
" Well, sir, if you knew how the fairies treat Paddy Lynch and 
his family you would really pity them. In the town of Glack- 
nadrummon, the place where they live, there are a great many 
holly bushes and thorn. There's not one of these that's not 
choking full of fairies. When the horses are ploughing in the 
fields, and tuiTiing at the corner of the ridge, they're often 
knocked down, by the fairies ; but, sir, that is not the worst of 
it, they annoy poor Mary, Paddy Lynch's daughter, the most 
of all. Every evening at the gloaming the fairies are heard 
shouting about the house * Mary Lynch, Mary Lynch.' When 
Mary goes to bed she covers her head through fear, and then 
the fairies attacks her, and beats her, and bruises her till she's 
really black and blue. There's not one of Mary's coats that 
the fairies have not cut up into diamond holes, and if any one 
goes to the barrel for meal, as soon as they lift the lid a num- 
ber of fairies leap out in their face, and run away laughing, 
and when they go to the press for clothes or anything else they 
require, when they open the door the fairies skip out as wild as 
two-year-old colts. Father' dear, they sent me to try what you 
can do ; I know you have power, and I know you will exercise 
it ; manaam your heart, priest dear, if ever you did a good act 
do it for poor Mary, for if there's not something done she'll 
not be long in it." The old man listened to her story with 
patience, a smile lighted up his countenance, and sometimes he 
laughed heartily at Nancy's story. 

'< Be not annoyed; Nancy, I shall soon settle those fairies, 

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INISHOWEN. 



they seem troublesome neighbours, they deserve a good punish- 
ment, and I promise you I shall not spare them." " Thank 
your reverence, thank you, father, it's yourself was always the 
priest in the pinch. Arrah what would we do without you ? 
what will we do when you're gone ? God keep that day far dis- 
tant. Amen, achierna I" " Well, Nancy, my remedy for getting 
rid of the fairies is a very simple one, and if you or Paddy 
Lynches family only take my advice the fairies will soon cease 
to trouble you. These fairies are very plenty you say V 
" Yes, father, as plenty as midges on a summer evening, or as 
the blades of grass in the field." " You say when they go to 
the meal barrel to fetch meal, and when they lift the lid the 
fairies spring up in their face. Is that true, Nancy ?" " Yes, 
your reverence, quite true ; God forbid I would tell your rever- 
ence a lie." " Well, Nancy, when they endeavour to spring 
out put the lid on the barrel, catch two or three of them, or 
even one ; you'll have no trouble, as yoii say they are so 
plenty ; bring one of them to me, and I promise you I will 
give it such a beating as will frighten others from playing such 
tricks in future!" The old priest's advice produced the desired 
effect. Whether it was that the fairies were afraid of the 
punishment that awaited them at the hands of the priest, and 
thus fled the locality, or whether it was that Nancy and Paddy 
Lynch's family were unable to catch any, we cannot now affirm. 
One thing is certain, Nancy did not return again. 

Months passed on, and in the meantime the priest forgot all 
about Nancy and the fairies. At last he happened to see her 
one day. " Nancy," said he, " what about the fairies ; you did 
not bring many ?" " Father, dear," said she, " forgive me, it 
was all a mistake ; I can tell you the truth now. Mary 
Lynch, sir, had a stepmother, and she wished to get rid of 
poor Mary ; it was she raised the story about the fairies ; it 
was she went around the house every evening, calling * Mary 
Lynch, Mary Lynch ;' it was she cut my poor Mary's coat into 
diamond holes ; and it was she bruised her and beat her when 
in bed. I was ashamed, father dear, to come and tell you, 
seeing how things turned out." " No matter, Nancy," said the 
good priest, " I am glad we hunted them, and I trust they will 
not annoy the district for the future." 

I have already referred to the situation of Clonilly Natioual 
School, which is not far from the boundary of the parish of 
Iskaheen. From the mail-car road, at the head of the Carrow- 



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ISEAHEEN. 183 



keel incline, a line of road leads off in the direction of the 
school, and passes through that district of the parish which is 
called the Meedians, which term signifies meadows. There are 
three townlands that go by this name, of which I shall have 
something more to say by-and-bye. The people of the district 
in question are of the old Celtic race, religious, moral, and 
strictly honest. They are charitable, too, for the benighted 
stranger, or mendicant, whose face they are familiar with, is 
never rudely repulsed from their door ; and I am sure they 
would share their last meal with anyone whom they saw in 
want. There is not, I think, on the face of the globe a more 
virtuous people ; indeed, this character of charitableness, in- 
tegrity, and purity of morals, is applicable to almost every dis- 
trict of the barony. I have it on the authority of a priest, 
with whom I was in conversation on the subject, and who had 
ministered for ten years in two different parishes of it, that, 
during all that time, he never baptized one illegitimatt child. 
Keligion and virtue, however, are not incompatible with 
gaiety, and humour, and fun. Indeed I think it could easily 
be shown that harmless mirth, periodieal amusements, and 
athletic sports, judiciously practised by the young, give pleasure 
and enjoyment to the aged, as they recal to their minds the 
manly exercises and pleasing rivalries of their younger days ; 
and, secondly, confer benefits on society and religion by purify- 
ing and exalting the minds, and developing the muscular 
energies of all who take part in them. Athletic exercises pre- 
vailed much more in our fathers' days than in ours ; we have 
come to imagine them almost fools, and have ourselves become 
grave, serious, philosophic, and precocious ; sometimes haughty 
and overbearing. We have grown fond of hoarding money, 
and we have got to be very wily and clever in pursuit of it ; 
we have learned to snuff, and to chew and smoke tobacco, to 
export our beef and our mutton, our eggs and our butter, to 
the English and Scotch ; we have learned to wear bfoadcloth, 
and to drink tea every day ; but, after all, I do not think that 
we are better men, or happier men, or that we live a longer life 
than our forefathers. Praying to be excused for this digres- 
sion, I take occasion to say tiiat no people are fonder of the 
dance, the fair, the wake, and the like, than the good people o£ 
the Meedians. There is no one thing, however, they can en- 
joy more than the wedding. Weddings, are, however, not now 
what they were in the good old times. The wedding then usually 



184 INISHOWEN. 



lasted for five days, sometimes the entire week. During all this 
time mirth and festivity prevailed, and but seldom w^ the enjoy- 
ment interrupted by a quarrel. The marriage was solemnized on 
Tuesday or Thursday ; any other day of the week was deemed 
unlucky. The "Bottle Night" wa« that which preceded the 
day of marriage. On this evening the friends of the " happy 
pair'' came, uninvited, to visit them at the house oi the intended 
bride. Each man took with him a bottle of the " native," and 
was sometimes accompanied by a female relative ; after drink* 
iug the health of the " young couple," he delivered the remain- 
der of the contents of his bottle to the " best men" for distri- 
bution among the general company. The wedding guests were 
usually chosen from those who attended on this night, and 
great care was taken that the niunber of males and females 
should be exactly alike, and, similarly, that the number invited 
by the brid^room should equal that invited by the father of 
the bride. After the " wedding day" came the " old weddings 
ds^y ;" the next Sunday was " out-going Sunday," and the fol- 
lowing day was " out-going Monday," when the whole com- 
pany again assembled in order to proceed together to the 
market of Cam. In all their movements, whether to church or 
market, they marched in regular procession, and not quite like 
the wild geese, (pardon me) for they went in double file. When 
the distance was too far for walking conveniently, they rode on 
horseback, and in the same order. The wedding ended with 
the markef; "but the " inf are" sometimes occurred on the 
same day, that is, the escorting of the bride to her new home. 

It is now more than forty years since a young man from the 
Meedians came to Donagh in search of a wife. Th© fair 
partner of his life was from Glenagannon. When the marriage 
ceremony was ended, and after th^y had all been refreshed 
with good strong draughts of pure Inishowen, the party pro- 
ceeded to the young man's residence in the Meedians. There - 
were some twenty or thirty horsemen, and most of them carried 
bahind theip, on a "jE>iKion,"a member of the fair sex. Ladies 
at this time wore not the Leghorn bonnets, nor the shovel 
bonnets or sky-scrapers, nor the "kiss-me-quicks," nor the 
little wide-awakes which we have seen on them since, nor the 
decorated oyster shells which we see on them now ; but regular 
tall beaver hats with feathers. Many wore neat riding-habits, 
and some red cloaks ; but hoops w;ere regarded, and properly 
so, with universal and religious abhorrence. The, country was 

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ISEAHEEN. 185 



covered with snow, and large wreaths were accumulated in the 
mountain pass of Glentogher. They rode at a furious pace, 
competing with each other for the bottle, which it was customaay 
to present on such occasions to the first horseman of the party 
who should arrive at the wedding housa They were just 
about to emerge from the glen and ascend the steep hill of the 
Cloghan, when one of the riders fell. Whether it was that he 
was a bad horseman, or that his weak head was unable to bear 
the mountain dew, at this distance of time I cannot determine, 
but certain it is that he fell, and the riderless horse galloped 
away over the mountain. His fall was unheeded or unob- 
served by the others. When the party reached the Meedians, 
a distance of about three miles from wh^e our hero was un- 
horsed, they found there was one man wanting. Anxious 
about his fate, now that the goal had been reached, three or 
four returned in search of him. They travelled on, retracing 
, the course they had just run, even to the Cloghan, and still 
there was no trace of the missing man. On the right hand side 
of the old Cloghan hill, as we travel upward, there is a consi- 
derable expanse of firm moorland, overgrown with short heath 
and herbage fully the height of the heather. By the clear 
light of the moon they were able to discern a horse grazing 
among the heather, near the crown of the hill. Needless to 
say it was tie horse of our fallen friend. They proceeded a 
little farth^ on, and still no trace of the lost one. They were 
now begininng to dread the worst, that probably he was 
tramped to death by the horse, or that in his fall he had 
tumbled into the river and been drowned. While thus cogitat- 
ing on his probable fate, and just as they had got to the foot of 
the hill, and near the spot where the new road now branches 
off, they espied the missing man, not dead, not drowned, but 
riding on a sod fence, his hat off, using both whip and 
spur against the sides of the fence, and shouting at the top of 
his voice ! 

On the road which leads from Quigley's Point to Derry, and 
at the distance of about two miles from the former, the tra- 
veller passes through the townland of Ture. There is a resi- 
dence near the shore, known as Ture House. About thirty 
years ago a gentleman named Edmund O'Neill resided here. 
Mr. O'Neill was a son of Bryan O'Neill, of the county Antrim ; 
his brother, Neill John O'Neill, was late Crown Solicitor for 
the county Antrim* Mr. O'Neill was a lineal descendant of 



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1 86 INISHOWEK. 



Con Bacagh, the first Earl of Tyrone. The late Dr. O'DonoTan 
says, for the space of fourteen years he made anzions inquiries 
to ascertain if any descendant of the first earl could be found. 
Dr. Beeves informed him that there are no less than three septs 
still extant, who claim their descent from Con Bacagh ; and 
the late Edmund (yNeill was one of these. Mr. (yNeill being 
aware that he was a real descendant of the Earl of Tyrone, en- 
deavoured, about thirty years ago, to have the extinct earldom 
of Tyrone revived in his favour — ^in one word, he wished to be 
elevated to the pewage, under the title of Baron Clan O'Neill. 
"Fortified by the sworn testimony of the Ulster King at Arms, 
he drew up a memorial embodying his claims, and which was 
signed by the late Dr. Peter McLaughlin, Catholic Bishop of 
Derry, and Dr. Kieman, Bishop of Clogher, and forwarded in 
due course to the Dnke of Wellington, who was then at the 
head of ^e Government. I have been in conversation with a 
gentleman who saw the memorial and the pedigree attested by 
the Ulster King at Arms, and autograph letters of the Duke 
of Wellington, Earl Bussell, and Earl Grey, relating to the 
matter. It is needless to observe that Mr. O'Neill was not 
successful in his claim. 

Iskaheen, or Eskaheen, was formerly called Uisce Chaoin. 
As before stated, Eoghan, son of Niall of the Nine Hostages, 
who died in 465, was buried here, as we learn from the Annals 
of the Four Masters. There is no trace of his grave, 'howevei*, 
extant. 

I now proceed to give some biographical notes of Dr. O'Don- 
nell, a native of luishowen, who succeeded Dr. M*Davitte as 
Koman Catholic Bishop of Derry. He performed the duties of 
parish priest for some time in Iskaheen, to which I shall here- 
after revert. The Bight Bev. Dr. O'Donnell was a student of 
the College of the Lombards, at Paris. The following extracts 
from his diary show his outfit, and the course of his journey to 
that celebrated institution : — 

" July, 1777. — Invoice of things put into my saddle-bags at 
the Bev. Dr. M^Daritt's house, near Strabane — 9 shirts of fine 
linen, marked CD. ; 6 do. of coarse kind, 8 stocks, 9 pair of 
stockings, 2 pair of breeches, 2 flannel waistcoats, 1 French 
grammar, 2 Irish hymn-books, 2 pocket-handkerchiefe, 6 pair 
of ruffled sleeves." 

"1777— Left Strabane July 8th. Slept that night at 
Augher, at Widow Duggan's; second night at CasU^blaney, 



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ISKAHSEK. 187 

Third day rode to Drogheda. Stayed there two nights. Sup- 
ped and took break&flt with the ladies of the nunnery. Became 
acquainted with Father Burell, and some gentlemen besides. 
Fourth day of my journey went to Dublin on the stage coach. 
Stayed there two nights. Took the packet-boat for Liverpool, 
at five o'clock afternoon. Had a pleasant view of the country- 
going down the Liffey, the Hill of Howth to the left hand, the 
Wicklow mountains to the right, which we had in view next 
morning, likewise Holyhead ; sailed down the Welch coast, and 
arrived at Liverpool on the 16th, at 8 p.m. Took a slight 
view of the docks, which were well supplied with ships. Saw 
also the floodgates, drawbridges, with some other curiosities. 
The most pleasing view was off the Exchange, from which the 
whole town could be seen. That evening (the next, we pre- 
sume, after his arrival) I took my seat in the Liverpool Fly, 
and set out for London, at five o'clock. Drove all night. 
Dined at Lichfield, about 100 miles from Liverpool, a country 
village, not very large, but remarkable for an ancient church, 
adorned with three spires, and a great many pictures of saints 
and other religious people — as they seemed to me to be — set up 
in places outside the church, all made for them. Supped that 
night at Meridon, about 30 miles oflL Went by Coventry, St. 
Albans, and Highgate. From thence to London, where I arrived 
by 8 o'clock p.m., on the 1 9th day of the month. Stayed there 
two nights, having heard high mass in Lincoln Field Chapel. 
Saw the royal apartments in the Bang's Palace. Took an outside 
passage on the Dover stage, being anxious to see the country. 
Went out by the Queen's-Head Inn, 8 miles from London to 
Bochester, a long, narrow town, but few streets, having the 
Thames running through the middle. From thence to Canter- 
bury, 25 miles; to Dover, 15 miles ; 73 miles from London to 
Dover. The coimtry seemed very productive ; beans, wheat, 
and hops ; no 'flax or potatoes, but great quantities of brush or 
wood. That day the rain fell prodigiously ; we had little 
pleasure on the journey, but very wet skins from our curiosi- 
ties. That night we slept at Dover. Entered the College of 
the Lombards on the 26th July, 1777." " 

We regret that the diary is interrupted here. Dr. O'Donnell 
was ordained and oflidated as a priest for some time before he 
3eft Ireland. We find from another entry in the diary the fol- 
lowing extract : — 

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188 INISHOWE!^. 

" Left in the hands of my uncle a cbalice, pixis, and patina^ 
all of silver, which I bought for six guineas.'^ 

He preached his first sermon in the College of the Lombards^ 
on the 6th of April, 1780. The following critique, which he 
records in this diary, shows he was a man of great humility : — 

** Languid in the first part, monotonous throughout the most 
I)art, awkward in some of my gestures, stiff in my body, and a 
few faults in language.^' 

It would appear froln many entries in this diary that the 
Irish students were able to defray their collegiate expenses from 
religious foundations established by many of the Catholic 
families of France, as the following entry will show : — 

** April 17 — Received 56 retributions frotn the sacristan of 
St. Jean Greve, of which I sent 20 to Ireland." 

The practice of borrowing and transcribing sermons seems to 
have been very common at this time, as the following extracts 
will show : — 

"July 1st, 1781 — Grave Mr. M'Kieman two sermons, one 
on the * Passion,' the other on the * Last Judgment.' " 

" August 29th — Gave Mr. M'N^ly one oh * Final Impeni- 
tence,* and received from Mr. M'Nally, at this time, a sermon 
on the * Love of God,' and one on * Heaven,' and a third on 
* Unworthy Communion,' and another on the * Small number of 
the Elect' (returned these,) with a dissertation on the * Real 
Presence.' " 

There is another entry without a date : — " Sorrowed from 
Mr. Egan two sermons and a controversy on * Purgatory,' of 
which I returned one sermon." 

Dr. O'Donnell took the degrees of B.D., and afterwards of 
D.D., after two hard-contested theses. The expenses attendant 
on the taking of a degree in such a famed university as the old 
Sorbonne may be interesting even at this remote period. We 
subjoin a copy of a few of the items :— * 

"Inscription, 9f. ; supplication, 12c. ; right of examen, 18f. ; 
to Blundeau, 3f. ; right of thesis, 8Gf. ; engraver, 7f. ; printer 
and carrier, 6f. 10c. ; after the thesis, lOf. 4c. ; for the presi- 
dent, 9f. ; letter of bachelor, 3f. 12c. ; books, 2f. 10c. ; the 
whole amount was 164f. 8c. For the second thesis for D.D. 
the expenses were, inscription and right of examen, 27f. ; to 
Blundeau, 3f." 

From another entry in his diary it appears Dr. O'Donnell, 

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while in Paris, was witness to a family arrangement between 
Lord Massarene and his agent. 

He seems to have remained in Paris for the period of six or 
seven years. The fltst mention we have of him in Ireland is 
on the 1st of October, 1784i He was living at this time in 
the little village of Muff, near Culdaff, in the house of a man 
named John Doherty. His jurisdiction extended over all the 
parish of Malin, and a great portion of Culdaff, from Money- 
darragh to Ballyhillion, of which he Was the sole priest — a dis- 
trict attended at present by no less than sev6n priests. 

Dr. M*Davitte died in 1797 ; Dr. O'Donnell succeeded him 
the following year as Bishop of Derry* In 1819 Dr. Peter 
McLaughlin, a native of Donaghmore, was- transferred from 
Raphoe, as coadjutor to Dr. O'Donnell, in which capacity he 
remained till 1821, when, on the death of Dr. O'DonneD^ he 
succeeded to the undivided jurisdiction of the diocese. 

After Dr. O'DonnelFs elevation to the episcopal office he con- 
tinued, like his predecessors, to perform the duties of the most 
hard-working priest. He visited the sick, heard confessions, 
attended stations and the like. During a part of the time he 
Was thus engaged, he sojourned in the house of a gentleman 
named Gwynne, not far from Ture, in the parish of Iskaheen. 
Mr. Gwynne was a Protestant, and a very liberal, kind-hearted 
man. One raw, guaty morning in the month of March, the 
ground being covered with a deep layer of snow, the good 
bishop stood in Mr. Gwynne'a hall awaiting the return of the 
servant, who went to saddle and bring his horse. The other 
inmates of the house were yet in bed, save Mr. Gwynne him- 
self, for it was before sunrise. Considering the long journey 
which the bishop should perform ere he reached the station- 
hoiise on that inclement morning, Mr. Gwynne placed a de- 
canter of pure Inishowen on the parlour tablg, and bringing 
him in he filled a bumper, which he earnestly pressed his lord- 
ship to accept. " M^, Gwynne," said the bishop, " I thank 
you kindly for your thoughtful attention, but I am to celebrate 
mass at the station-house." " What matter, my lord, take this, 
the morning, you see, is awful, it may save your life ; take it, 
and I pass you my word and honour no third person will ever 
be the wiser of it." It is needless to say the bishop did not 
comply, but his gratitude to Mr. Gwynne was none the less. 

In an old rath not far from Iskaheen a curious ring pin was 
found about twelve yeajrs ago. The matejrial is of bronze, and 

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190 INIBHOWSN. 



it ifl 10| inches long. The shank of the pin is decorated, the 
head is cleft with recurved spires, like what is often seen on 
some of the pommels of a Banish sword. The decoration on 
the shaft is the well-known scroll pattern, which is common in 
the illustrative art of Ireland from the seventh century down- 
wards. 

There was found at the same time and at the same place a 
brooch, the scroll-work on ^hich is of a most peculiar form, 
and displays great artistic skill. Perhaps it may be considered 
as one of the finest specimens of bronze workmanship. The 
decoration on the dasp ends partakes of the Celtic trumpet 
pattern, while the central connecting curved strap is decorated 
with a raised intertwinement, like that seen on some of our 
sculptured crosses, and on the illumination of ancient manu- 
scripts. 

Next to Slieve Snaght Iskaheen mountain is one of the 
highest in Inishowen, and some splendid views of the surround- 
ing country and of Lough Foyle and Lough Swilly may be had 
from its summit. There are National Schools at Clonilly, Ture, 
and Muff, (male and female) in this parish. 

Allusion has already been made to the Very Eev. William 
McLaughlin, the venerable parish priest of Iskaheen. I here 
subjoin a biographical sketch of his life : — 

The Very Eev, WiUiam M'Laughlin was bom in the year 
1 780, in the townland of Aught, parish of Iskaheen, and barony 
of InishoWen. His mother was Oi^ane, from the country of 
the O'Cahans. The rudiments of Latin he received from a per- 
son named M^Colgan,* who taught school near Camdonagh. 
He was after this sent to school near Buncrana, where ht was 
schoolfeUow of the late Eev. William O'Donnell, and his two 
brothers. 

He entered the Eoman Catholic Seminary of Derry in the 
early part of the present century. One of his professors there 
was the late pastor of Strabane, the Eev. Mr. M*CaflErey. His 
Lordship, Doctor O'Donnell, was president of the institution. 
He was ordained priest in the year 1806. For five years he 
served as curate in Derry and the parish of Templemore, In 
1811 he was appointed parish priest of Iskaheen, which up to 
that time had been imited with Templemore. In the year 
1829, shortly after Emancipation had been gained, he paid a 

* fix, Thomas M'CoIgan, of CregwDoiiillao. 

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ISKABEEK. 191 



sliort yisit to America. In 1836 he was transferred, at his 
o-wn request, to the united parishes of Leek and Donagheady, 
-where he spent eleven years of a most useful and laborious 
mission. He returned again to Iskaheen in 1847, that his 
ashes might repose, as he often said, in his native parish. 

His whole iSe was regulated with the same punctilious pre- 
cision as that of the inmates of a religious community. He had 
a time for everything, and everything was done according to 
order. He rose at four o'clock in the morning. An hour at 
least, but oftener three hours, were spent in meditation at the 
foot of the crucifix. During the time of stations he had the 
divine office, as far as vespers, finished before six o'clock ; and 
at other times before eight o'clock, which was his time for cele- 
brating mass. After a frugal breakfast, he took a short walk 
around his little farm. Next he studied a portion of moral 
theology. Neyraguet's Compendium of Liguori was his favourite 
author on this subject. He called it his " Manual of Theology." 
Before dinner he read a chapter of the Memoriale VitceSacerdotalis, 
and a chapter from the " Imitation of Christ." His evenings 
were spent in prayer, in reading the works of St. Bernard, in 
preparing his moral discourses for the instruction of his flock, 
and in the study of the Sacred Scriptures. In the latter, 
Estius and A'Lapide were his favourite authors. It was his 
custom, for the last few years of his life, to tell the entire 
beads seven times each day. 

Such was his rule of life, unless interrupted by stations, 
visiting' the sick, or other missionary labours. He attended 
to his own spiritual concerns, but he neglected not at the same 
time those of the flock entrusted to his care. No priest ever 
toiled more, or laboured more incessantly for the spiritual wel- 
fare of the people committed to his charge. He was the most 
laborious and hard working priest that ever laboured. For 
more than forty -five years of his life there was scarce a Sunday 
in which he did not preach to his congregation. In the parish 
of Donagheady he attended alternately the three chapels of the 
parish, and always preached in each. In his early days, when 
priests were but few, and the labours of the mission were most 
laborious, he has been known to sit for hours after night hear- 
ing confessions at the stations. Missiopary 'labour was to him 
but a labour of love. During the last jubilee it was a com- 
mon practice for this pious priest, already in his 75th year, to 
sit ten consecutive hours in the confessional. Often he could 



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192 INISHOWBK. 



be seen, in the dim dawn of a cold winter morning, riding 
along the mountain road, or bj the lone hill-side, on his way 
to the station-house. The drenching rain, the pelting hail, or 
the drifting snow, could never delay him, even for a moment. 
The surrounding world wsis, perhaps, fast asleep, but this holy 
man had already performed half the ordinary labour of a day. 
Like other holy men, he was strict on himself, and most in- 
dulgent to others. He was kind to his curates, and always 
manifested towards them the loving affection of a father. He 
always considered the position of a parish priest, as it was the 
more exalted than that of a curate, so it required more arduous 
exertion. With his curates he not only equally participated 
the labours of the parish, but was certain of performing the 
largest share. If he heard that any one of his parishioners re- 
quired his spiritual ministrations, he would not wait till sent 
for, but instantly hurried to the spot. If a sick-call came to 
his door at the dark hour of midnight, the messenger was not 
sent to the curate — ^no 1 he would cheerfully rise from his warm 
bed, and quietly unlock the door, lest he might disturb his 
domestics. And he might be seen in his 75 th year, in a cold 
night of winter, ride along the rugged glen, or across the 
mountains, to the wretched hovel of some sick parishioner. 
Having performed the ministrations of religion to some dying 
sinner, and prepared the soul to meet its God, he would quickly 
return home and retire to rest, and in the morning few of his 
domestics would know that he had attended a sick-K^ the 
night preceding. 

Though he was exempted from fasting, owing to his advanced 
age, and a complication of diseases, under which he was suffer- 
ing, still he observed the fasts of Lent with the most 
rigorous austerity. When his attendant often endeavoured to 
dissuade him from such severe mortification, his meek answer 
was, that " he would lose all his flesh before he would enter 
tl^e grave, and even if it did remain so long, it would, in the 
end, only become the food of worms." 

The schools he has founded, the churches he has ornamented, 
the confraternities he has established in Iskaheen, in Leek, and 
Donagheady, and the many sermons he has preached, are silent 
witnesses of his zeal for the glory of God, and monuments of 
his memory as imperishable as tht everlasting mountains of his 
native Inidiowen. 

But the great feature of his life remains to be told — ^his ad- 

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ISKAHSBK. 193 

vocacy of the temperance movement. Father Mathew was the 
A.postle of Temperance in the south, and Father McLaughlin in 
the north of Ireland. Long before the time of the good Father 
Mathew, and when teetotalism was anything but a popular 
moTemeBt, he advocated ihe good cause. 

The glory of God and the honour of religion were his ruling 
motives during life. Both remained with him till the end of 
liis career. The greater part of what he possessed he be- 
queathed to religion, directly or indirectly. His bequeste, 
though not large, were proportionate to his means. His house, 
on which he expended a large sum of money, he has left to the 
parish of Iskaheen, as a parochial residence. There is a be- 
quest to the new Deiry Cathedral, and another to the Derry 
Convent 

Culmore, or the great angle, occupies the base of a gently 
sloping hill, and projects into the Foyle at the distance of four 
and one-half miles from Londonderry. As before stated, Cul- 
more was forfeited by John O'Doherty, and was not included 
in the re-grant of his possessions to his son, Sir Cahir. The 
fort or fortress of Culmore was founded by Sir Henry Docwra, 
in the year 1600. In. 1603 it was g^risoned by $0 men, 
under Captain Hart. In 1608, as before stated, it was taken 
by Sir Cahu: O'Doherty. On the 29th of January, 1612, the 
Irish Society was formed, and they received their charter of in- 
corporation on the 29th of March of the same year, under the 
style and title of the Governors and Assistants of the new 
Plantation of Ulster. In 1616 Mr. Alderman Proby and Mr. 
Mathias Springham were sent over to Derry to take a survey 
of the plantation. On the 27th of July they reported that the 
twelve children sent from Christ's Hospital to be apprenticed 
had arrived safe in Deny, and they caused ten to be ap- 
prenticed in Derry and two in Coleraine. They considered it 
would be proper in future a market-house and town-house 
should be erected in Derry, by which the city of London would 
gain the rent of three houses then used as a town-house there. 
They continued Thomas Baven as surveyor for twQ years, 
holding his service necessary for measuring and setting out the . 
fortifications ,at Derry and Culmore. Towards the close of the 
year 1643 the parliament having taken the Solemn League and 
Covenant, the London adventurers sent over an agent with 
letters, desiring it to be taken within their Plantation. On the 
15th of April, 1644, the Mayor of Derry was ordored by the 

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194 IKISHOWEK. 



Lord Lieutenant and Coancil to publish a proclamation^gainst 
the Covenant. Colonel Merrin was made governor of Derry 
by the Marquis of Ormonde. He was obliged for expedience 
to take the Covenant, which was generally received by the 
people. In 1645 Colonel Mervin having become obnoxious to 
the parliament, was displaced, and Lord Folliot appointed in 
his place. In 1648 Sir C. Coote treacherously seized the per- 
son of Sir Bobert Hamilton, forced him to order his castle of 
Culmore to be deUvered up, and then sent him to prison in 
London. The Indep^idents were now masters of all the north 
of Ireland, and the forts of Ulster, except Charlemont. The 
Marquis of Ormonde having failed to draw over Sir C. Coote 
to thp King^s interest, Derry and Culmore were besieged by 
Sir Ilobert Stewart in 1649. After a protracted siege the par- 
liamentary party were successful, and in gratitude for the ser- 
vices of the citizens of Derry, the usurper, Cromwell, re- 
granted the original charter of James the First, which had been 
cancelled and condemned by warrants of Charles I. .At the 
Bestoration Cromwell's charter shared the same fate as its pre- 
decessor, and a new one was granted by Charles II. on the 
10th April, 1662, which is the one under which the Irish 
Society now act. 

Previous to the siege -of D«rry a strong garrison was placed 
in Culmore, under the governor, William Adair, Esq., of Bally- 
mena. The garrison, however, acquired little distinction by its 
defence. A body of the King's troops, consisting of 400 foot, 
a regiment of cavalry, and a body of dragoons, under the com- 
mand of General Hamilton and the Duke of Berwick, having 
chosen their quarters near the fort, the commander surrendered - 
and capitulated. 

Lord Chichester was the first governor of Culmore fort. His 
appointment dates the 30th of June, 1609, and from that 
period until within a few years ago a regular succession of 
governors was kept up, although for more than a century and 
a half Culmore has been disused as a military station. 

''It appears from an inquisition taken at Derry, that Sir 
John CDogherty was possessed of the townlands of Ballyamett, 
Ballymagroarty, Coshquin, Culmore (then called , Leharden,) 
and Elaghmore, being a part of his piincipality of Inishowen, 
all which was upon a surrender confirmed to him by letters 
patent in the 30th year of the reign of Elizabeth. In the year 
1699 Sir John O'Dogherty rebelled, and forfeited all Iniahowen^ 

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BISHOPS OF DERRY. 195 

but it was afterwards re-granted to his sop, Sir Cahir, as ap- 
pears from an inquisition taken at Deny in the 7th year of 
James the 1st, with the exception of the quarter of Ballyarnett, 
the half-quarter of Leharden, (now Culmore townland) and 
300 acres allotted to the castle of Culmore. In the year 1608 
Sir Cahir also rebelled, and his letters patent, therefore, be- 
coming nvU and voide, his whole property was granted to 
Arthur, Lord Chichester, of Belfast, by letters patent, bearing 
date the 20th of November, in the 19 th year of the reign of 
James the 1st. It appears from the same inquisitions that 
Lord Chichester being thus seized, leased his possessions here 
to Faithful Fortesque, Knt., Arthur Usher, Tristram Berrisford, 
and Charles Points, and to their heirs." 

Iskaheen, which was formerly united to Templemore, was 
erected into a parish in 1811 by the Eight Rev. Dr. O'DonneU, ■ 
and given to the Rev. William McLaughlin, who exchanged for 
Donagheady in 1836. He was succeeded by the Rev. Simon 
M*Leer, who exchanged for Lower Badoney, and was suc- 
ceeded by the Rev. Manasses O'Kane, who exchanged for 
Omagh. He was succeeded by the Rev. Mr. M*Kenna, who 
exchanged for Donagheady, and was succeeded in 1847 by the 
Rev. William M*Laughlin, who returned to his native parish, 
where he died in 1856. He was succeeded by the Rev. Wm. 
Logue, who died in 1865, and was succeeded by the Rev. 
James Devlin, the present parish priest. 



Chapter XVIII. — Bishops of Berry — Conclusion, 

The history of the origin of many of the Irish Sees is in- 
volved in much obscurity, nor do their limits seem to be accu- 
rately defined. This seems to be peculiarly the case with 
regard to the Se« of Derry. The present See seems in the early 
ages of Christianity to have been divided into no less than 
three separate and independent Sees — namely, the See of 
Inishowen, the See of Ardstraw, and the See of Coleraine. 
There can be no doubt that Inishowen was, for one time, and 
indeed for many centuries, a separate See ; in fact, its insular 
position would seem to indicate this, but there are other and 
stronger arguments. As we have shown in an early chapter 
St. Patrick visited Inishowen and founded two churches, one of 
which was the church of Donagh, MacCarthaU; a disciple of 

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196 iinsHowEir. 



St. Patrick) was appointed bishop of this church; ik> doubt 
his jurisdiction extended over the barony. The Annals of the 
Four Masters tell us that in the year 618 St. SiUan, bishop, 
died at Moville. He, too, must haye been Bishop of Inishowen. 
Besides this, there is strong intrinsic evidence in the axchaBologicai 
remains to be found in the churchyard of Donagh, to indicate 
that the locality was once a cathedral church and an episcopal 
residence. We have alluded to these in a preceding chapter. 
One of the most interesting, and certainly the most important, 
is the stone on which is carved, among other figures, the like- 
ness of a bishop in pontificals, with crozier in hand. 

Having said so much with regard to the See of Inishowen, 
W6 will now make a few observations regarding Axdstraw, 
which means the height overlooking the valley. St. Eugene is 
the patron saint of this See, and, indeed, of the diocese of Deny. 
His festival is celebrated on the 23d of August He was a 
disciple of St. Patrick, and consecrated by the saint himself. 
He lived to an advanced age, for the annals of Clonmacnoise 
say that he died in 6 1 8. There is, however, a difficulty with re- 
gard to this, which has been noticed by Ussher and the Bollan- 
dists in the history of his life — ^namely, how to reooncile the 
two facts, that he died in 618, and was consecrated by St. 
Patrick. Ardstraw remained an Episcopal See for the space of 
seven centuries. It extended cwi the east of the Foyle from 
Ardstraw to Magilligan. It was called indiscfiminatelj the 
See of Ardstraw, Kinel-Owen, or Tyrone. The Annals of the 
Four Masters tell us of a bishop residing there in 705, and of 
A. Engus, Bishop of Ardstraw, who died in 878. From the 
same source we learn that the Cathedral Church of Ardstraw 
possessed valuable relics. This church was called Daimbliag, 
or great stone church, and was burned in the year 1099. 
There is much uncertainty as to the time when the See was 
changed to Rathlury or Maghera ; some say it was in the year 
1118, after the council of Rathbreasil, at which the legate 
Gelasius presided. Bathlury appears never to have been a 
separate and independent See, but rather the place of the 
cathedral church of the diocese of Ardstraw, and where the 
Bishop of Ardstraw resided after the cathedral church was 
bum^. Derry was elevated to a bishopric in the year 1158, 
under the episcopacy of Flaherty CBrolchan. It was this 
bishop who, in union with the monarch, McLaughlin, built the 
Cathedral Church of Derry in the short space of 40 days, as 

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BISHOPS OF DERRT. 197 



the Four Masters testify. Ware and Usaller make a succession 
of Bishc^ in the See of Deny since the days of Brolchan ; 
others say there was ilo regular succession till the year 1293, 
for that the four bishops who succeeded Brolchan were styled 
Bishops of Ardstraw. After the episcopal residence was changed 
from Ardstraw to Rathluiy, a portion of the diocese of Ard- 
straw was annexed to Clogher, which, however, was added to 
Derry in the year 1266,- as the following extract from 
OTlagherty's Ogygia will show : — 

" Hyfiachre is a country of Tyrone, in which Ardstratha 
lies, formerly an Episcopal See near the r^rer Derg, afterwards 
annexed to the See of Clogher, (in Tyrone, first the residence of 
the princes of Orgiellia, afterwards converted into a cathedral,) 
but about the year 1266 it was taken from the See of Clogher,. * 
with many other churches of Hyfiachre, in the gift of the 
Tyronians, and was incorporated with the See of Londonderry." 

The diocese of Derry, as it now stands, seems to have been 
established in 1266. Nowhere do I find that Inishowen 
formed a portion of the diocese of Eaphoe. In fact, it seems 
to have been a separate and independent See till it was incorpo.- 
rated with Derry, either in the year 1158 or 1266. It is true 
that towards the end of the 1 3th century the Bishop of Eaphoe 
claimed it, and went to Borne for that purpose ; but, had his 
claim been a valid one, no doubt he would have succeeded. 
Towards the close of the last century another Bishop of Eaphoe 
(Dr. Coyle) jrenewed his claim, but with no better effect. In 
fact, tlie only foundation for the claim seems to be the county 
in which Inishowen is situate. 

Having said so much regarding the origin of this See, we 
will subjoin an account of the Catholic Bishops who. have pre- 
sided in it since the period of th« Eeformation. We hav« 
already given a lengthened account of some of them. Eory 
O'Donnell succeeded in 1 5 2 9, died in 1 5 5 1 . Eugene O'Doherty 
succeeded in 1554. The Ordnance Memoir gives the name of 
Magennis instead of O'Doherty. This is an error, as we have 
quoted in a former chapter the document sanctioning his ap- 
pointment, which was taken from the Barberini Archives. 
O'Doherty was succeeded by Edmond O'Gallagher, an Augus- 
tinian monk, who was translated from Killala in the year 1569, 
as the following document, which was discovered in the Barbe- 
rini Archives last year, will show :-^ 

" 22° t/wmV, 1569, referente Cao'dinal Morone^ $ua sanctitcu 

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198 INISHOWBN. 



ahsoLvit Beverendvm patrem dominum Edmvu/ndum OGdUmr^ 
Epiicopum AUademem, a vinculo qwo eedesi/B AUadensi tene- 
hatur, et eum trayistvlit ad ecclesiam Derensemj wicantem, per 
obitum Eugenii Idocho^tiy ipsumgw iU% in episcopum prcefecit, 
cum reterUione priorattLS de Eachinis ordinU canomcorwm, reg^i- 
Icaium mncti Augustini aim suis annexis AUadengis diocesis 
valoris XXIV. marcarum sterlingorumJ' 

O'Gallagher was killed in the. year 1601 during the civil 
wars that prevailed ia the reign of Elizabeth. The }^ace was 
the county Derry, in the country of the (yCahans, on a little 
rising ground adjoining the old church of Drumachose. After 
the death of O'Gallagher the See of Derry was without a bishop 
for the space of 120 years. The diocese was governed during 
those eventful times by Vicars. History mentions the names 
of four, Bernard Geraghty, Patrick M*Mahon, and Terence 
Kelly. The name of the other is given in Moran's Life of 
Oliver Plunket. These Vicars exercised to a great extent epis- 
copal jurisdiction, but could neither ordain, consecrate chahces, 
nor bless altar stones. The first bishop after (^Gallagher was 
Terence Donnelly, who succeeded in 1717. Was Vicar of 
Down and Connor before this. His successor was Neil Conway, 
a native of Ballinascreen, who resided there, and was buried 
in Ballinascreen churchyard. He died in 1738. Dr. O'Eeilly 
succeeded in 1 739. This bishop is the author of the Cathecism 
which is in general use in Ulster. He was succeeded by Dr. 
Brolaghan, in 1751. This bishop, who was chaplain to the 
Sardinian Embassy, never resided in his See. The revival of 
religion, and, indeed, we may say, of the episcopacy in the 
diocese of Derry seems to date from the year 1760, when Dr. 
M'Colgan, of whom we have already spoken, * was elevated to 
the See of Derry. This good bishop lived at Muff, and is 
buried in an unknown grave in the lone churchyard of Cloncha. 
He died in 1769. He was succeeded by Dr. MacDevitte, who 
died in 1797. Dr. O^Donnell succeeded in 1798, and died in 
1823. Dr. Peter McLaughlin, a native of Donaghmore, who 
was educated for 9 years in a college at Paris, and who returned 
to Ireland in 1790, was appointed parish priest of Olnagh, 
where he remained till 1802, when he was elected Bishop of 
Baphoe. He was translated from this See in 1819, as coad- 
jutor to Dr. O'Donnell. He governed the diocese for many 
years, and died in 1840. Dr. John McLaughlin was appointed 
Coadjutor in 1837, Dr. Maginn succeeded in 1846, and died 



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BISHOPS OV DEBBT. 199 



in 1849. He was sncceeded by his Lordship, Dr. Kellj, ihe 
present bishop. 

In commencing the foregoing diapters I designed to sketch 
what I may term the physical aspect and topography of the 
peninsula of Inishowen. I wished to draw the attention of its 
people to the prominent and proud position which this terri- 
tory holds in the andent history <>£ our country ; to the illus- 
trious line of princes Of the Kinel-t>weny Ixhh and reared 
within the walls of Aileach^ who wielded the monarchal sceptre, 
and who proved themselves the fathers of their people and the 
defenders of the rights of their country ; to notice the did 
druidical temples, and other remains of pagan times, as illus- 
trating the colonisation of the district and the form of worship 
at that remote period; to show the childlike docility with 
which its people received the light of the gospel, and to point 
to the churches and monasteries which they founded and en- 
dowed ; to call to remembrance the struggles which our fore- 
fathers maintained witl^ the Dane and Saxon, successfully 
against the first, and though to the other they were forced to 
yield, it was not till after a most obstinate defence^ when all 
Ireland besides had been subdued, and more than four centuries 
after Henry received the submission of the southern princes. 
Then, after their subjugation, when wholly deprived of all 
political liberty, the mere serfs and slaves of the conqueror, or, 
not daring to appear in their former homes, timid fugitives oc- 
cupying rude huts in the depths of the mountains when all else 
was lost, how they cherished and clung to the faith of their 
fathers, their attachment to the ancient worship increasing with 
persecution's rage, I designed to glance at the remains of the 
ancient churches and reli^ous houses, and the monumental art 
and christian antiquities found in connexion with them ; at the 
seats and strongholds of the andent chieftains whose 

•* Ivy-clad turrets, the pride of past ages, 

Though monlderiug in ruin do grandeur impart*' — 

and to treat of some of the eminent and remarkable men of 
this district who flourished in later times. I aimed at inter- 
spersing with the descriptive, historical, and biographical 
matter, such anecdotes and legends as wonld illustrate the 
customs, habits, and inclinations of the people, and prevent 
that satiety attending, more or less, the perusal of a dry enu- 
meration of abstract i^ts. ' 



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.1 



200 ' INISHOWBN. 



Whefther this progranune has been carried out with any de- 
gree of satisfaction it is for the reader now to determine. 

Before concluding, I would remark that it has be«n stated on 
• good authority that most of the descendants of the ancient aris- 
tocracy of ^Ireland are to be foUnd among the humbler classes, 
hedging, ditching, or cultivating the fields ; in lineage, there- 
fore, the peasantry are not inferior to ;their would-be masters. 
. Agaih, riches merely cannot be accepted as the standard of 
superiority, for money makes boors of many, but real gentlemen 
of few,- and po\:erty is no disgrace, imless it is the offspring oi 
slbth or .extravagance. Pope truly says — 

■*\ ** Honour and shame from no condition rise, 

rt , Act well your part^ there all the honour lies ; 

Worth makes the man, the want of it the fellow, 
a The rest is all hni leather and pmneUo." 

^. How pleasing, then, would it be to find the. people acting on 
"such principles, appreciating their own dignity, manifesting a 
spirit of manly, generous independence in every relation of life, 
and despising all cringing, hollow sycophancy. Knowledge 
always improves mankind ; it is, therefore, the duty of all to en- 
courage its dissemination, and to avail themselves of every means 
of attaining it. To the inhabitants of the old peninsula I say 

\- briefly, read, note, and digest, so that when opportunity offers, 
as it assuredly will, you may be the better able to assist your 
country. Finally, I crave the forbearance of the readers for 
the shortcomings and blemishes of this little work, and now 

" My task is done— my theme 

Has died into an echo ; it is fit 

The speU should break of this protracted dream; 

The torch shall be extinguished which hath lit 

My midnight lamp and what is writ is writ. 

Would it were worthier !" — ^Bybon. 



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*'i 



APPENDIX. 



A gentleman signing himself " (yDohertf^ has taken me to 
task for stating that Grianan was used as a temple for the worship ^ 
of the srun. In a series of letters published in tte Journal he, 
affirms, on the authority of Dr. Petrie, that the ruins of^ ■ 
Grianan are the ruins of Ail«ach — ^that is, that Aileach, the 
royal residence of the Cinel-Eoghain, and Grianan were 
identical. I subjoin everything tangible in that correspondence, 
and it will be seen how much Dr. Petrie relies on that very 
etymology which both he ahd " CyDoherty*' affect to despise. - • 
" O'Doherty" says with reference to myself : — 

" He states that the remains on the summit of Greenan Hill, 
in Burt, are the ruins of a temple of the sun, but he does not 
give us the authority on which this important assertion rests." 
He then goes on — " I am aware that this same view was advo-i 
cated in an interesting and ingenious article by Mr. Peter 
McLaughlin, of Newtowncunningham, in the IhMin Penny . 
Jourrud of 1834 or '35, and, if I remember rightly, was made 
by him to rest on the derivation of the word Grianan, The 
opinion of that talented and accomplished scholar (whose eyly 
death was a serious loss to our local history^ was gene^fjly 
adopted, until the publication of the * Ordnance Survey of 
Londonderry,' when the searching labours of Mr. Petrie and 
the illustrious' Dr, O'Donovan dispelled the illusion." 

He quotes Petrie as follows: — "It has, indeed, been sup- 
posed by some ingenious writers that this curious remain *of 
antiquity was erected as a temple of the sun — a conjecture 
resting on the etjnnology of its name, Grianan, which, as they 
state, does literaUy mean * the place of the sun/ or * appertain- . * 
ing to the sun.' * * * * " * 

" That Grian or the Sun was an object of worship among^ 
the Pagan Irish is not to be denied, but that the word Grianom, 
was ever applied to denote a temple of the sun, or a temple of 
any kind, no authority has been as yet adduced or found, while 
there are abundant evidences that it was constantly used in a 

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202 AFF217DIX. 



figurative* sense, to signify a distinguished residence or a royal 
palace. It is thus explained by (yReilly : — * Grianan, a sum- 
mer-house, a walk, arched or covered over on a hill for a com- 
modious prospect, (a. balcony) a Boyal seat.'" But, even 
though it were allowed that the word Griarum was sometimes 
applied to a temple of th^ sun, the Irish authorities still 
abundantly prove that this — the Grianan of Aileach — was not 
a monument of that description. In all the Irish histories the 
palace of the northern Irish kings is designated by the name of 
AiUach simply, or Grianan- Aileach, AHeach-Neid, or Aileach- 
Fririve i and its situation is stated to have been on a hill in 
tjie vicinity of Deny, * * # This name 

Aileach was also applied to the surrouiidbg country, anciently 
called Tyr Ailig, or the country of Aileach, but now preserved 
only in two adjacentt townlands, called Elaghmore and Elagh- 
beg, or the Great and Little Elagh. 

-All doubt of the identity of Grianan Fort and the ancient 
palace is, however, removed by the following passage in a poem 
on the history of the Tuatha-De-Denauns, composed by Fiann 
of the Monastery— that is, of Monasterboice — in the commence- 
ment of the lltili century, and preserved in the Books of Lecan 
and Ballymote : — 

" Fell on the eastern shore, 

At the very side of the rath of Aileach, 

Indai More, the son of Delwy Lib, (the Lybian?) 

By Gann, the son of Dera, of the white lumd.*' 

It is certain that the words eastern iho^e^ here used, could 
only be applied to that of Lough Swilly, which approaches 
the foot of the hill at that point only. The present castle of 
Elagh is some miles from any shore,J A further evidence of 
this identity is furnished by a description of the royal fortress, 
preserved in the Dinnseaiichus — an Irish topographical work of 
very high antiquity, if not, aa Dr. O'Connor states, the earliest 
treatise of the kind which any country now possesses." 

In reply to this I wrote and quoted the first eight lines of 
that poem, the Dinnseanchus, aa follows : — 



* I have italieised the word figurative. 

t These toTmlands are nearly three mileB distant &om Grianan. 

t This is incorrect. 



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APPENDIX. 203 



** Oileach Fredreann, seat of the kings royal of the world ; 

Bun, through which ran roads imder heroes, thrQugh^t;e ramparts ; 

Hill on which slept the Bagda ; red its flowen, 
^ Many its houses, just its plunders, scarce its stones ; 
j^ Loftj Caislen is Ailech Frigrexm, fort of the good man, 
w^ Dun, the shelter of heroes, Nohle lime house. 

Delightful place is Oilech Oahran, green its hushes. 

Sod, where placed the Dagda, the resting mound of Aedh." 

Now Petrie himself says the stones of this building on^the 
hill were wholly uruxmented, and I fear the parts of the de- 
scription which I have italicised will scarcely apply to it. In 
answer to this CFDoherty wrote, saying the words " Noble lime 
house,'' in one edition of the Ordnance Memoir, were converted 
into " Noble stone house" in another edition. The Irish words 
in the poem are "aeilteach emir," and I confess I know not 
how they can be translated "Noble stone house." I quite 
agree that the structure was ante-Christian, but deny that this 
passage says or implies so. I also deny that aU the buildings 
of the De-Dananns were constructed of stones ;"th^ temples 
indeed were ; their dwellings were nbt. Bef erring to this 
amended edition of the Survey, O'Doherty says : — 

" In it the tra.nslation of the poem in the Dinnseanchus 
dijOTers considerably from the translation in the first edition. 
Thus we have 

* Dun, place of shelter of heroes, noble stone house,* 
instead of * noble lime hcude,^ which latter phrase would have 
been entirely against Dr. Petri©.* He had been arguing that 
the ruin on Greenan was the Grianan-Aileach of historic fame, 
•because Grianan meant 'a royal seat,' and Aileach, ^ stone 
house or habitation ;' he had confidently referred its erection to 
the Tuatha-De-Dananus, the chief characteristic of whose 
buildings was that they were constructed of stones, (not of clay 
or timber) and that these stones were 'wholly uncemented,' 
and in confirmation of what he has said he quotes the poem re- 
ferred to, which treats of the very place there is question 
about. The use of lime in building was not introduced into 
Ireland until after the introduction of Christianity, and as this 
edifice was constiructed without lime or cement^ I>r. Petrie con- 
cludes that it existed before the Christian era. In his ' Bound 
Towers' Dr. Petrie treats the subject of the buildings of the Pir- 
bolgs and Tuatha-Pe-Dananus at length, and some interesting 

* For or* against let tls have the true translation of those words 
" aeilteach emir." 



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S04 APPENDIX. 



kaormation may be had on the point from * Madden's Shrines 
and Sepulchres.' vol. I., chap. 20. The opening stanzas of the 
poem prove another point for onr antiquarian — ^viz., the 
existence of five ramparts. The relative position of these lie 
carefully indicates. 

"Your correspondent, however, seems to think that a difficulty 
arises from the words * green its buAes.' If we look at Greenaji 
as it is now, that is quite true ; but it is not as it now is, but as 
it then was, that we are considering it. Walker in his ' Irish 
i^ards,' tells us that the bardic colleges were built in the midst - 
of vast groveS, that one of these colleges was in Inishowen, and 
that the whole face of the peninsula was then covered with 
treeSj Later still-, Mr.'^ampson tells us this district was called 
* Dair-coillragh, that is, the country of the oaks. The ancient 
chieftains of the western bank, including the peninsula of 
Inishowen, were called Hy-^aher-teaghj that is, chiefs of the 
habitations of. the oaks ; this name is now spelled and pro- 
nounced O'Dogherty.' — (Sampson's Survey, chap. V., sec. 27.) 
It is at present destitute of trees, but so are the other hills and 
moimtains — and I might add the lowlands— of the barony." 

In a third letter O'Doherty says : — " As regards the extract 
from Colonel Blacker, I will merely say that it is both specious 
and ingenious, but entirely fanciful, and unsupported by any 
historical evidence. I do not mean to depreciate the Colonel's 
labours, nor to deny that we owe him much for first drawing 
attention to the venerable pile, but I don't think I am bound 
to adopt a man's opinions when mistaken, simply because he 
happens to be perfectly sincere and correct on other points." 

But coming back to Aileach itself, as noticed in the second 
edition of the Ordnance Memoir, Dr. Petrie says : — " The sig- 
nification of this name — Aileach — independently of its attend- 
ant epithets, is obviously * stone house, or habitation /' and it is 
so explained by Michael O'Clery, the chief of the Four 
Masters, in his Glossary of ancient Irish words — ^Aileach, or 
Ailteach, i.e., a name for a habitation, which (name) was given 
from stones* This derivation of the word is strictly borne out 
by the Dinnseanchus, in its history of the name of Aileach. 
After stating that Corgeann, in punishment of his crime, was 
sentenced to carry on his back the dead body of his victim until 

* Oileag-Neid op Nead was the primitive name, which clearly enough 
implies " Swan's-Nest." 



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APPENDIX. v^l 

, ^^ :^^siQ 

he sliould find a fitting stone for his tomb, the poem stat^tn 
he (Corgeann) * soon reached the promontory of the bright ^j^e 
of Febhal/ where he found what he required." Then (I quSfe© 
from tlie first edition of the poem) — 

" When Corgeann saw the stone of Febhal he soon seized it, 

And carried it with him, tho' a heavy load. 

He told the Dagda truly without boasting — ' \ 

* There is the stone outside, O restrailier of pride !* 
The Dagda said, with countenance of protection — ' Truly 
The houses arid the place shall take name from this stone.* 

* Aileai:h shall be the name of this town of 'Banba (Ireland.) 
Beyond every hill like the hill of great Teinur,' said P/tgda^s Druid." 

In^a poem of Farrell Oge Mac "Ward, (who lived in 1655) 
addressed to Calvagh Eoe CDonnell, and which was found in 
i^anuscript by Mr. Eugene O'Curry, in the papers of the Rev. 
Dr. Todd, F.T.C.D., it is said that the coming of CDonntll was 
long predicted and expected at E^iania, at Tara, at Aileach. 
Of the latter it says : — 

*♦ Nor was AUeach Neid, too, less expectant- 
Of onejlike thee to arise unto her 
Hoping thou wouldst relieve her anguish.'* 
&c., &c., &o. 

In a foot note the illustrious Dr. O'Donovan explains the 
locality of Aileach thus : — " Aileach Neid — Now Ela(^h, one of 
the ancient palaces of tJlster." This very formal explanation 
from Dr. O'Donovan should have much weight. 

The End. 



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